To make a bold claim like hiring stuff is good for the planet, I thought I should actually do some research. I mean if I say with enough conviction some people will believe it but I actually want to prove it to myself. But first, let me talk you through what’s going through my head before I take an “extremely” balanced approach to finding some research that I can shoehorn in to fit the narrative….
I believe that by consuming less and pooling our resources to share more, that we are contributing to a less wasteful society, that we’ll buy goods that we need, not want, and as a result would have more money to invest in better quality and longer-lasting goods. Less waste and declining demand for cheaply made goods must surely be better for ol planet earth? That’s my long-winded observation and I’m struggling to see a counter-argument. As a result, the more great Kiwi’s that use Flack, the greater the scale of the above cycle and bingo, we’re all doing our bit to keep the planet happy. By now you’re saying “hey he’s got some good points, I’ll sign up to Flack!” Or, you’re saying “he’s all shit prove it”
So I spent a weekend trying to find out how much Kiwi’s spend on cheaply made goods, what proportion of total waste is made up of these goods at the end of their usability. I also wanted to find any data about single-use purchases of durable or leisure related goods. The people saying “I’m all shit prove it” win. After several hours of poor-quality research I couldn’t find any legit figures from a reputable source. I did find a couple of things worth note.
According to Statistics NZ, to the year ending March 2017, Kiwis’ spent nearly 15 billion dollars on durables – things like furniture, hardware, appliances. Let’s assume that 10% of these purchases were for limited use and were of low quality. That would be 1.5 billion dollars on unnecessary consumption of products with a potentially short life span. In the same year, the World Bank listed New Zealand as one of the most wasteful nations in the developed world. A big contributor to this is around household waste, packaging, food and sub-par recycling culture.
Finding data on how much inorganic/durable waste is in landfills with overtime trends or national comparisons were not clear as there didn’t seem to be a category for this type of waste. So you can make up your own mind whether we’re on to something or not. What I can categorically say, is that it happens to some degree. Some of us are wasteful and we’re quick to draw the creddy on goods whether we need them or not.
With a shift to a “use-not own” culture, pooling our resources and embracing the sharing economy, Kiwi’s would directly be contributing to creating a less wasteful society. In that case, it wouldn’t hurt to get flacking!