Earth Day is a time to renew and reuse — and I'm not talking just about recycables. I'm referring more to other people's ideas and their green ways.
I was disappointed when I read this article
about how Europe is expanding plants that turn trash into heat and electricity. Denmark alone, which has a population of 5.5 million people, has 29 plants with 10 more underway. Yet America, with a population of 300 million, has a total of only 87 such plants spread across the country.
How is it that a country with 54 times the number of people as Denmark can fail to convert trash into energy? I'm just incredibly baffled.
On another note, Whole Foods, based in Austin, announced in its "Earth Day Commitment" that it will reduce all stores' energy by 25 percent by 2015. I'm really interested in how the company will pull this off. The WF website includes a laundry list of details about how it will approach this, including getting rid of old equipment and replacing it with new, efficient machines.
Maybe UT and other big industries can do this as well, and follow the model that Whole Foods has easily stated on its site. I can think of a multitude of companies that have the money to pull this off, including HEB and, uh, Walmart.
Anyway, since I can't open up my own trash to become a usable-energy plant, and I'm not qualified to help companies reduce their energy, my personal Earth Day commitment is to replant and actually use my rosemary, thyme and basil plants that sit idly dried-up on my windowsill.