Why strive for “zero waste”? Because sorting waste is very good, but no waste is much better. And because we have seen enough images of plastic waste islands floating in the ocean. And finally, because we want to reduce those mountains of trash that we throw every day.
Five ways to gradually evolve towards “almost zero waste”
1. A cautious start and good organization
List some simple good habits in a list and perform one each week. For example, start with water bottles for each family member instead of water in plastic bottles. Stop advertising in your mailbox by putting a “no pub” sticker on it, borrowing board games from the library instead of buying them, etc. Rest assured, you don’t have to say goodbye tissues right away, because they are practical at so many moments.
Trying to live without waste also gives you the chance to share the whole family behind one goal and become a family full of positive energy. A new challenge can boost the atmosphere in the family!
2. Process your waste
You can dispose of organic waste such as fruit and vegetable peelings on the compost heap. You make one yourself in the back of your garden or you go to the neighborhood compost bin if you live in the city. More and more such compost bins are coming to our cities. And so you can have a chat with your neighbors! Also, consider other useful applications of your food scraps: mandarin peels make your home smell fresh, carrots make a delicious sauce. You will find many practical “zero waste” recipes on the web!
Another solution will delight your children: buy one or two chickens. They will enjoy most of the organic waste. And in exchange, they reward you with fresh eggs!
3. Prefer to buy seasonal products in bulk
When shopping for groceries, always bring some linen bags, Tupperware dishes, and jars. After a while, that becomes a reflex and they come in handy at your butcher, in bulk shops, packaging-free shops and even in the supermarket (where you sometimes already find products in bulk).
At home, you use jars for pasta, lentils, flour, … They are trendy and often very decorative and beautiful to look at. By the way, did you know that you can save energy by redesigning your home?
Also buy as many local products as possible, for example from a nearby farm. Go to the cheese trade in your neighborhood or subscribe to the weekly delivery of organic vegetables and fruit. Also, use as many seasonal products as possible. Do you not know some ingredients? That is the chance to discover new recipes… and new flavors.
And why not spend some time in your own vegetable garden if you have green fingers? It is your best guarantee for relaxation with the whole family. Collect rainwater to water your garden and immediately reduce your water consumption.
4. Prefer a deposit
Plastic bottles are one of the main sources of plastic waste. In the supermarket, therefore, prefer to buy drinks in glass bottles that are recycled.
5. Do it yourself with less waste
Making or preparing something yourself helps to reduce waste and you also have something to be proud of. Examples?
- For your children’s snacks, you no longer buy individually wrapped cookies but bake delicious cookies or muffins yourself.
- Do-it-yourself is fashionable, also for beauty and cleaning products. Organize an evening with friends to prepare all kinds of creams, masks or cleaning products! Do you want to bet that you will have fun and get some nice tips?
- Is a household appliance broken? Then try to restore it first. Are you not such a handy do-it-yourselfer? Then you will definitely find a good repair shop nearby.
If you have more things than what you needed and you think they are still usable and good for give away in the future, you can always use self storage in London to help you create some space in your home and no additional trash in the dumpster. With these five simple ways, you and your family is helping more than enough to help the environment.