Recycle station

April 4, 2018

 

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I have chosen to look closely at my recycle station in my neighborhood. Partly because it includes my action and relationship to it, but also because it is a result of a larger system of production and consumption which reflects on humans global impact of industrial activity.

Since half a year ago, I have chosen to focus on recycling my own waste, which is based on the supply of categorized containers in my residential area, such as glass, metal, combustible, electronics, etc. Since then, the same range has been created in my own apartment, althoug in a smaller format. The fact that we have access to a recycling station has mobilized me to recycle, but it has also rejectet my responsebility of it. Rather giving this rewared feeling of doing nature a favour. However, it also has not questioned my consumtion, which is the root cause of the problem, and where recycling takes the role of being a shifted responsibility, thereafter ultimately handled by an increasingly infrastructure of waste management.

Since year 1975-2018, the population in Svergie has increased by 25% 2, recycling by 40% and the amount of waste (measured in metric ton) by 81% 3. The statistics clarify the current increase in the population’s willingness to handle their waste but even stronger; to consume.

What is worrying is that consumption has set a linear production system in crisis on a finite planet. Where natures resources is in a constant extraction in order for humans to produce, distribute, consume and lastly dispose. Which has resulted in a linear machinery of pollution, constantly demanding chemicals and energy1. Industries located furter away from countries that can afford its distance, avoiding its pollution and unfair labour standards. The architecture and infrastructure have also a tremendous role in the exploitation of a network that contains and maintains this system; where building becomes a forceful geological agent, digging, mobilizing, transforming materials, water air and energy4. A whole system growing at the brink of enviromental exhaustion, wheres fantasy of endurance need to be abandoned5.

And at the end of this production chain we find both the consumption and waste handling as parts we know the most about and have the most insight into because we ourselves have to throw what we bought1. But our insight ends at the moment we leave our waste for being pick uped. In this way my distance and relationship to it is worth questioning; what parts of this exploited network are made visible to us and in what way does it affect my relation to it. Where does things go after they have been out-doesed from my recycling station and how does this linear production end?

Diana Wagner

Websites:

1. https://storyofstuff.org/movies/story-of-stuff/ (downloaded 2018-03-03)

2. http://www.sopor.nu/fakta-om-sopor/statistik/sverige-aatervinner-allt-mer/ (downloaded 2018-03-27)

3. http://www.scb.se/hitta-statistik/sverige-i-siffror/manniskorna-i-sverige/befolkningsutveckling/ (downloaded 2018-03-27)

  1. ”Architecture in the Antropocene” by Etienne Turpin
  2. ”Sex after life” by Claire Colebrook

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