Be the 100th monkey

I was encouraged by the article in the 23 March issue Titled, Sewage raises stink downtown.

You really could not miss the article; right there in living colour – on the front page – with a picture of tourists covering their noses to deal with the odoriferous anomaly.

Reading further, Mr. Screaton is quoted as saying ‘the malfunction (that caused the stench) was disappointing.’

He was not apologetic, nor did he need to be. Instead, Mr. Screaton offered insight into the sewage treatment facilities’ mission to manage the stuff we discharged into our famous crystal clear waters in a responsible way.

The point is, as the Powers That Be in the Cayman Islands strive to protect our precious waters, there are many things we all can do to join the movement for environmental stewardship (as it is called in environmentalist circles).

The truth is our choices as consumers will greatly influence the kind of world the children of our grand kids will inherit.

For example, when buying your supplies at the store, there are so many choices that sensory overload can dull our decision-making abilities.

I deal with the confusion by carefully reading labels and choose products with the following guidelines:

Biodegradable: This means when the dishwashing liquid, toilet paper, etc. make there way to the sea, it will break back down – ashes to ashes, just like in the Bible!

I was actually surprised to find a car wash product this way called Zymol. The other brand actually had warnings about the toxic effects of the cleaning agents. If the label does not say biodegradable, there is a good chance these nasty, poisonous chemicals will wash into the ocean or pass through our treatment plant and come into contact with a fish, and wind up on our dinner table. Could this happen? Maybe. Will it? Maybe not. Why risk it?

Re-useable- the ultimate in recycling: I like to bring my own cup to the coffee shop. Not so much because the landfill will have more space, and I am saving trees – as a coffee connoisseur all I know is whatever glues are used to hold the cup together are getting into my coffee and interfering with the taste. Who knows, I might even get sick when I am old, or something. It’s like drinking out of a piece of garbage – gross!

OK, I know I am getting long of tooth, so let me close by sharing the true story of how the actions of just one individual (like you) can change the world – it is a shift in consciousness, and goes like this:

‘The 100th Monkey’

On a remote island, scientists are observing a new behaviour as young monkeys begin to wash the sand from the food they pick off the beach. The scientist record the behaviour as the younger monkeys teach the older ones this new idea of washing the food. Eventually, the process catches on until the mind-boggling part comes, when the 100th monkey on the remote island adopts the behaviour and monkeys all over the world start washing there food. (it is true – google it!)

Charles Pulcine

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