Conscious consumerism

In the times of global climate and humanitarian crisis, many of us have started to think about the source of the product we buy, so as not to support ideas that are incompatible with our own system of values. We have begun to question poor-quality products, and more recently all the corporations that support Russian aggression, in favor of seeking substitutes from local entrepreneurs instead of supporting corporations whose business practices are far from being guided by the good of people or the good of our planet's climate. History is being written before our very eyes, in which finally the moral values count more than the material profits.

When thinking about the future, the place we are creating for future generations, we cannot continue the ignorance to which, due to convenience of comfort, we have become accustomed.

As a result of the industrial revolution, in the last 30 years alone we have inundated the world with garbage that threatens the ecosystem of our planet and ourselves. So much plastic has already been produced that we could cover the entire surface of the Earth with it. Official data shows that the European Union, which has some of the best waste management standards in the world, only recycles one third of plastic, 31% ends up in landfills, and as much as 39% is burned. Waste incineration is not only highly non ecological and harmful, it is also highly carbon-intensive, producing 400 million tons more of carbon dioxide in just one year.

The numbers are chilling because a whole truckload of clothes ends up in landfills every second and 21 billion tons, or as much as 85 percent of all textiles produced, are not recycled in any way.

We can argue about the culprits of this situation, but the effects are felt by everyone. So it is time we started to approach the subject with due seriousness.

The consumer, through his purchasing decisions, induces the manufacturer to produce those goods that are in greatest demand, and abandon those that do not sell. According to statistics, already every third Pole declares that caring about the environment is an important factor influencing his purchase decisions. What if all those who do not underestimate the problem of the climate crisis, ruled out compulsive buying dictated mainly by the price, in favor of supporting entrepreneurs who care about quality in the idea of less but better?

Would it be better to buy shoes every month, which constantly wear out but cost a few pennies, or a decent pair that will serve us for many months or even years at an adequate price? At such moments, the saying "I can't afford cheap things" takes on a deeper meaning. Would you rather, when buying products, support companies that employ "cheap labor" or entrepreneurs who care about their people and pay decent wages? These questions seem puzzling, but are they really? The development of world trade and industry is important, but not the most important. We should not completely stop buying new products, but we should certainly limit them in favor of thoughtful shopping in the idea of less waste. We should also pay more attention to consistency - we should reduce the amount of waste by giving up e.g. non-recyclable packaging, or upcycle and recycle what we can.

Choose consciously.