From September 4th to 9th 2017 it will be the Zero Waste Week. So what is the Zero Waste Week all about?
First things first: what does “Zero Waste” mean?
Zero Waste could be defined as a “philosophy” that rethinks the concept of consumption and production in the 21st century, a century that will face a major garbage crisis as well as resources shortages. The overall goal of this movement is to minimize waste and resources usage.
How to start THE ZERO WASTE WEEK? With 3 words: Recycle, Reuse, Reduce.
Zero Waste maximizes recycling, minimizes waste, reduces consumption and makes sure that the products consumed can be reused, recycled or repaired.
When at home always to try to recycle what is easy. Aluminum cans, glass bottles, carton & paper and the most important one: plastic bottles.
Choose which packagings you are buying or which you are not.
– Glass & aluminum are the best products to have in your fridge and cupboard as their recycling rate is 100%
– Paper comes next with good recycling rates even if not optimal (the green impact of paper recycling however is very good!)
– Plastic is the complicated one. With a recycling rate below 10%, all plastics are not recyclable. So if you can switch from plastic to glass do not hesitate.
Buy what the consumption “system” does not want to take. Ugly vegetables taste as good! Target the ones that you feel would go to the garbage.
The Zero Waste lifestyle also implies that you often make homemade stuff (jams, syrups, ketchup, cleaning products).
When buying a juice in a glass bottle for example keep the bottle to use it for making homemade syrups. Or keep your jam jar to use it for your own jams of to make pickles, or even a cleaning cream for your oven.
Egg cartons are a great idea for your kitchen garden’s seedings, which you can later transfer to aluminum cans. Just watch out that you are not overcrowding your house with reused packagings.
Avoid plastic bags. Tote bags will be your new BFF. Plastic bags are an environmental hazard. They are not recycled, end up in landfills or in the bottom of the oceans killing a crazy number of animals. Therefore having a simple tote bag to go to the grocery and always say no to plastic bags is a BIG step. Another tip: when you are purchasing fruits and vegetables, you often put them into a small plastic bag. You can now buy special bags for them that you can easily put in the washing machine.
Can you avoid unnecessary packaging? When you go grocery shopping look around for packagings. You will soon realize to what extent that is plastic packaging everywhere and sometimes worse: there are 3 layers of it. So when you are shopping check out if there is a brand that has less potential waste.
You can also look around to see if there is a no-packaging grocery store: you come with your jars and bottles and fill them with products your need: pasta, rice, even fabric softener…
Can you replace common products by no-packaging solutions? One of the main waste problems is water bottles. Do you really need to buy plastic water bottles or can you for example replace them by tap water infused with lemon, orange and mint?
Say no to individual packagings. How many times you are eating out and you see the ketchup in a individual packaging (hardly recyclable by the way) or the sugar in a 7g paper packaging. These products are really bad on the packaging level so if you can avoid them, you will be doing the planet a favor.
To know more about the Zero Waste Week click here!