I do not hug trees. I don't chase international fishing boats with over powered inflatables in the deep blue. And I laugh when my brother-in-law says that PETA stands for "People for the Eating of Tasty Animals". But I do have a mildly soft spot for the environment. I make it a point to retrieve other's discarded mono to my vest pocket, provided I can. And I absolutely will not toss trash out the car window when the Quarter Pounder and fries are finished.
One of my chores around the house is to take out the garbage every week, and every week I dump paper, plastic, and metal in a large plastic Hefty bag and drag it to the curb. Should I feel guilty? Should I curb my appetite? Should I feel good that the non-biodegradables will be dumped in a landfill and not the local waterway? The town I live in does not encourage recycling any more than charging for the service. I will not store a hundred bags of un-crushed aluminum cans in my garage just to drive them to the local recycle plant once a year for a few thin dimes.
I have to admit I tie all of my flies with synthetic material. Does that surprise you? It shouldn't. All the fly tying thread I purchase at Gander Mountain, Dick's Sporting Goods, and Cabela's at $1.99 a spool is synthetic. Some of it is polyester. Some of it is Nylon. Most of it is polyethylene. None of it, as far as I know, is biodegradable. And nearly all of it will end up at the bottom of a body of water.
Maybe I'm being anal about it because of my atrocities at the other end of my lifestyle. Maybe my pathetic attempt at cleaning up the environment is really just for my own mental well being. I suppose nothing in humankind is certain but death, taxes, and hypocrisy.
I'll continue to collect discarded mono, when I can. And, I'm going to see what happens when I tie my next flies with cotton thread and natural materials.