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Imagine, in great detail, an invention that could help reverse pollution — describe for us how your invention works and how it will help save the planet.

I have liked Inhabitat on Facebook for over a year and they post many articles about inventions made by so many young people in Africa, it is really exciting to read about them. Most of the inventions are low cost, made from local materials and are all related to important needs of their communities such as clean water access to electricity. I am nowhere near as talented or inclined to think outside the box as these amazing young people do, so I will let them save our planet. I highly recommend that everyone at least checkout Inhabitat once, if only to see how inventions are alive and well in the world of young people.

My contribution to eliminating pollution would be to scale back the rampant consumerism and materialism. If we stopped buying the cheap products and instead saved our resources to buy high quality products and when they break down , get them fixed instead of instantly throwing them away, that would make for less waste. I know that I am preaching heresy, consumerism and materialism is what keeps our global economy chugging along and for me to say stop buying is tantamount to sedition at the marketplace. I like to think of the old days when you bought something, it was made to last and if it needed repairs, there were repair shops easily found. Granted the time that I am looking at pre-dates Walmart, Target and discount stores, I am thinking of the age of the Mom and Pop store and when there was manufacturing in the States. The throw away culture wasn’t born yet.

I have been reading of dump sites located in China and in India for old computers and other electronic devices, and they are all near small villages, these villagers are exposed to fumes and runoff since they are tasked with destroying them. However there is a father and son operation that has come up with ways to recycle most of the discarded components into other viable materials for a whole slew of other products. They are the exception rather than the norm.

I really think that we need to steer away from the pervasive throw away culture that the new generation has already embraced since they don’t know any better. A planet made up of hazardous waste will only lead us down a path that we seriously don’t want to travel. There is still time to turn it around and making less waste is never a bad thing.