Providing the next generation with the skills and experience that could begin to reverse an impending global-scale ecologic crisis and bring us a bit closer to putting the planet and its population on a trajectory towards sustainability.
Without substantive recycling, in these ways or others, we perpetuate waste. Waste is excess. Excess is pollution. Pollution dirties our air, corrupts our land, fouls our water, poisons our ocean, and diminishes our future.
While most developed countries teach environmental education (like not chucking your batteries in the trash) and enforce strict regulations, there are still places out there where basic environmental protection, like regular garbage pick-ups and recycling, don't exactly jog knee-jerk reactions.
Practicing zero waste means moving toward a world in which all materials are used to their utmost potential, in a system that simultaneously prioritizes the needs of workers, communities, and the environment. It is ambitious, but it is not impossible.