From the victory garden at the White House to the oyster club of Sag Harbor, it seems we are living in the DIY, or “Do It Yourself,” era; and that’s a very good thing. For far too long, we Americans have relied on commercial grocery stores to ship in our food from thousands of miles away. We have opted for artificially fertilized emerald green lawns at the expense of our local water bodies.
All the while, we gave little thought to the environmental repercussions of our consumer lifestyle. And now, as these realities begin to smack us in the face through weakened eco-systems and global warming, people often feel the problems plaguing Mother Nature are far too intricate to confront as individuals.
But this excuse is merely a cop-out to continue under the status quo. (Though we have all been guilty of using this excuse at one time or another.)
It warms our hearts to see local individuals like Joe Tremblay enact grassroots changes instead of waiting for local governments to intercede. Tremblay seems to understand that local governments are bound by so much red tape it can take them months, if not years, to establish effective environmental policies. For Tremblay, though, all he has to do is fill a cage with oyster seeds, check on it once in a while and later reap the rewards of an oyster feast while also helping to purify the waters of Sag Harbor Cove.
Tremblay’s ideology of engaging people with their environment by not only creating incentive but also showing them how they can effect change and get back to basics is a sure recipe to create a more sustainable Sag Harbor.
Tremblay’s work shows that to be an environmentally conscious citizen you don’t need to spearhead a campaign or only purchase eco-friendly products and organic food, which can often be expensive. It can be as simple as riding your bike into the village instead of driving, picking up garbage you see on the beach or planting tomatoes in your garden.
If each citizen acted a little more conscientiously, we might be surprised how quickly Mother Nature could turn around.Â