Olivia W. Indiana

Trashy Business

A plea for help with the growing trash problem in our country.

Dear Future President,

Knowing that you’re very educated, you’ve heard enough about why I’m writing this letter to you. Hello, my name is Olivia and I am currently 17 years old. I was raised in a small farm town by the name of Salem in southern Indiana. We have plenty of crops locally and we even used to have a train that rambled through here a few years back. I often wonder if I’m ever going to get out of here due to the fact that there’s so much that needs to be done in our town alone. I want to help my community, but it will take someone and something bigger than me to do so. Growing up was a wee bit tough, but I finally made it. Primarily, I was raised by my grandparents since my mother was always busy working at the factory here in town. They taught me so many useful things when I was younger and they still continue to teach me more and more every day I see them. One of these lessons was that I should “never ever litter and don’t walk past without picking it up.” Of course when I was younger I didn’t see too many pieces of trash roaming the yards of businesses and strangers, but that’s not what we’re dealing with now. It’s way worse.

My curiosity lead me to research “trash stats”, which you could do as well, and proceeded to click on the first link that popped up. As I scrolled through the website, a small tear ran down my worried face. Did you know that America alone produces about 254 million tons of trash each year? Let me explain this to you more thoroughly. I was born in 1999 and let’s say that in the year 1999, we already accumulated a collective 2,000 tons of trash in the U.S. If you take 17 years times 254,000,000 tons, you get the product 4,318,000,000 tons of trash. We’re going to add 2,000 tons to that now. That adds up to be 4,318,002,000 tons. In the span of 17 years, the U.S. has figuratively accumulated this much trash in metric tons. Using our units that we weigh quantities with, that comes out to be 8,636,004,000,000,000,000 lbs. of trash that we as an American society have made. Can you imagine what our world would be like if these items were put to use again instead of throwing away decently reusable items? I’m pretty sure the population of America is smart enough to know this fact of reusing items. I hope we are at least.

Due to the increase of humanity and businesses, the Earth is in dire need of people to wake up and realize what they’re doing to her. Therefore, we need to establish stricter laws in regards to how much and where we dump out waste. In my last concluding paragraph of this letter, I have some ideas that are definitely going to help the world become one with nature again. In order for the commonwealth to listen, we need to implement restrictions on our waste and litter. In my business law/ethics class, we’ve learned about administrative agencies and yes, I know about CERCLA. But for the sake of the litter that’s being thrown out of the cars by ignorant people doing God knows what, I’d appreciate it if I could walk somewhere without having to take a grocery store bag with me due to all the litter. We should raise our fines for littering because it’s the best possible thing that we can do with the situation at hand. Not only do younger people litter, it’s everyone that’s contributing to this growing disaster. That’s another reason why we should really educate the young; they know they are committing a crime and it’s wrong, but they do not seem to care the slightest bit. We need to have programs setup to where we teach preschoolers and kindergarteners that littering is a very dangerous thing and that it is one of the most deadliest things to do, deprive people and animals of their life for the future.

Best regards,