WHY CARE: Zero Waste

Who knew that your morning takeaway coffee cup can’t actually be recycled because there is a plastic lining in it? What about those straws for cocktails? Or your plastic toothbrush that you have used and invested in a new one every few months since you were young? Nope, that can’t be recycled either.  

When you think about your daily life, do you ever stop to think about how much trash you are creating? Don’t worry, I didn’t either until recently.

As I’m a kiwi that’s just moved to Australia, I thought it would be interesting to see how much waste my new home turf produces each year. Turns out the stats are more shocking than I initially thought.

According to Clean Up Australia, “Australians are the second highest producers of waste, per person, in the world with each of us sending over 690 kilograms of waste to landfill each year (the United States is the highest waste producer)”. With all this waste produced, it’s enough to cover THE ENTIRE STATE OF VICTORIA. 

What’s even more shocking is that a lot of this waste is completely avoidable. All it takes is being a bit more mindful each day about where you buy your products, and what and where you consume.

Some Easy Switches:

  • Change from a plastic toothbrush that cannot be recycled to a bamboo one that decomposes once you throw it out.
  • Buy a reusable coffee cup
  • Buy a reusable stainless steel straw, or simply ask to not have one
  • Use a reusable water bottle, ditch the plastic options here ideally also
  • Take Canvas bags or a bag to the supermarket
  • You know those plastic bags you put your veggies in? Turns out you can get canvas bags for them also, or just avoid using them
  • Buy foods in bulk
  • Switch from using pads and tampons to a silicone menstrual cup
  • Invest in a metal razor. Replacing the blades only cost $3 for 100 so you are saving hundreds here over the course of your lifetime as well as the planet

I’m sure Lauren Singer from Trash is for Tossers has come up on your Youtube suggested feed at some point in your life for the simple fact that four years of her waste fits into a Mason Jar. I’ve attached the video for you to take a look and see that living a zero waste lifestyle, although it may be hard, is completely possible.

I have some interviews lined up with some absolutely epic humans in the next coming weeks to speak more about zero waste, why it’s important and how to make the move towards a more eco-friendly lifestyle.
I hope you enjoy learning about this movement as much as I do.

3 Comments

  1. Sustainably Simple

    So interesting! I think we unconsciously throw so much away but if we all made a conscious decision to reduce/ reuse/ recycle then it would make such a huge difference – I really believe that consumers have so much power – they just don’t realise it!

    Like

  2. savingsarahgrace

    Love this! I haven’t been brave enough to flip my entire life and go trashless [ although I think I live a pretty green lifestyle ] and have been noticing lately how much plastic is just in my bathroom – the toothpaste, the shampoo / conditioner / lotion / etc, toilet paper packaging, it’s just gross. When I’ve looked into trying to make some of my own products, so I can keep them in jars instead, I’ve been turned off by how many of the ingredients come in plastic. I know some of the plastic is recyclable, but I’d much rather just not buy it in the first place. Have you found any tips for avoiding it in the bathroom?

    Like

  3. Anneke

    Recently I attended a sustainable living day in my community which involved attending workshops of interest. I attended two workshops, namely where does our waste go and a second on worm farming. I have a worm farm so was keen to learn something new to add to an already successful project. The presenter for the worm farm workshop was passionate about life in general and made the comment that we throw away so much because we have bins. His travels around India revealed that people just throw their waste around them whereas in our culture we “bin it”. Now, would we have so much waste if we couldn’t just bin it? I believe not. It made me think. Why do we have bins that are not transparent? Why is waste a secret?
    I believe change comes from small things which lead to big results. Would one change be to have transparent bins? Less regular waste collection?

    Like

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