Monday, September 15, 2008


Israel is pretty big on the environment. People are good at not wasting water or gas (as they are both really freakin' expensive!). Many people do not have cars and scooters and bicycles are a normal site (except in the roller coaster I now call home where superman would not have leg muscles good enough for bike riding). Although there is no pickup for paper recycling there are drop boxes every few blocks. Glass bottles can be returned to stores for a refund.

But plastic bottles? Now there is a horse of a different colour!

So, the story goes that once upon a time bet shemesh did have plastic bottle recycling. They had these huge containers that were stuck to the ground and you tossed the 1.5L plastic bottles into them, and then every so often someone would come and pick the stuff up and take it to where old bottles go to die.

Then one day a kid tried climbing the tower and brought it over on himself. No one was hurt and eventually the city put the tower back up.

A little while later another kid brought the tower over on himself and was hurt.

Now, rather than thinking to themselves "Hmmmm, how can we make these towers safe by, say, bolting them securely to the ground", instead the iriya of Bet shemesh decided that public safety should prevail and as such there would be no more plastic bottle recycling in Bet Shemesh.

So there are two options. One is to just throw your bottles into the garbage (which as a former Toronto resident just kills me). The other is to stack them up in a pile that takes on a life of its own somewhere in the apartment (which, as a relative of Bubbie's just kills me) and periodically when the pile is threatening to envelope your children drive it out (or if you do not have a car than ask someone else who is taking out their pile to drive it out for you) to a neighbouring moshav or kibutz that might have plastic bottle recycling.

Toronto-self be damned, we have taken to just throwing them out.

1 comment:

Marion said...

It's not soooooo environmentally friendly. We finally got the plastic bottle bins in Ma'ale Adumim, and paper ones too! Your little plastic bottles, by the way, can also go back to the supermarket for a deposit. What kills me is the tin cans, and the cardboard, and the milk & egg cartons...all those things we always recycled in Toronto.