EP9 | Resisting Garbage with Lily Baum Pollans
Defying conventional wisdom on garbage is our only hope of reducing our global waste problem.
This week we welcome Dr. Lily Baum Pollans, the author of Resisting Garbage: The Politics of Waste Management in American Cities to discuss her research on how we ended up in a world that is so disposable?
Resisting Garbage dives into the world of how cities treat garbage – specifically comparing two cities: Boston and Seattle. While Boston is compliant to our current system that recycles and disposes first, Seattle defies these dominant conventions to ultimately reduce its cycles of consumption.
The relationship between waste and repair could not be more deeply connected. Both changing our conceptions about the things that we interact with daily and understanding our economic system’s current hostility to reuse/repair is crucial for carving a path to a less extractive future. We also discuss the impact of lobbying when it comes to how governments treat their waste, the limits of individual agency in reducing garbage, as well as the importance of local intervention in increasingly complex system of global consumption.
These convenience products actually, subsidize an economy that's just so brutally extractive that people can't sustain themselves without relying on those products.
-Lily Baum Pollans, Author: Resisting Garbage