By Don Ford

BERKELEY (KPIX 5) – How much trash do you throw away in a day? You might be surprised, especially if you had to carry it along.

On Earth Day in Berkeley, businessman Greg Dalton headed to a meeting, where he could be told he’s full of garbage.

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Dalton, part of Climate One of the Commonwealth Club, carried real garbage in his backpack, as part of a five-day “Trash on your Back Challenge.” For the past five days everything Dalton normally throws in the garbage goes into the backpack, and he must carry it at all times.

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The exercise can get sticky. In an interview with KPIX 5, Dalton pointed out items, including a plate and egg shells from a meal he cooked for his daughter.

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Some folks are not sure what to make of it, bringing garbage to an expensive business luncheon. A couple days ago, he went to the opera with garbage in tow.

“I went to the opera house for the ballet and got a few looks. My wife stayed 10 feet away from me but, a lot of people inside were very supportive,” Dalton recalled.

Ellen Cohan collected her trash as well and brought it to work. “It’s bringing up a lot of good questions and starting a lot of good conversations,” Cohan told KPIX 5.

Dalton said, “People around the country have done this. People in the NFL have done it. A Navy admiral has done it in order to make the point to get people thinking and talking about the trash we create.”

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According to the Commonwealth Club, the average person throws away four and a half pounds of waste every day. Good thing this competition only lasts for five days.