Living a Less Wasteful Life- 1 Step At A Time (or maybe 8!)
While everyone is focusing on only getting rid of plastics to embrace a zero-waste lifestyle, what we often forget is that waste created in any form should be avoided. From not wasting water, switching off the lights and fans, reusing old clothes as dusters (we’ve all done that), to using the last bit of toothpaste and other toiletries, somewhere, somehow we have all contributed to the zero-waste lifestyle. If you are planning to go zero-waste and you also get anxious about what to do with old plastic, we have curated a list of things you can try and gradually and eventually turn them into habits.
1. Make All Natural Fertilizers
Banana peels, coffee, lime, eggshells- there is a whole lot of organic waste in your kitchen and garden which can be converted into fertilizers for your plants! It is a win-win for you, your plants as well as the environment.
2. Use existing plastic until it wears out.
Plastic doesn’t wear out easily. Say what you may, it lasts a long time due to its polymers, made of simple building blocks assembled in a repeating pattern, making it strong and durable. Throwing away all of your plastic and buying brand new eco-friendly products would be contrary to the zero waste lifestyle. We should only swap plastic products with eco-friendly ones when they’re not usable.
3. Reuse! Repurpose!
Repurpose & Reuse the existing plastics for something like storage containers, organizers, planters, etc. Throwing away your still-in-use, functional products under the garb of sustainability will only create more waste. Similarly, use old clothes as dusters, upcycle old furniture by painting them… the list is endless. You just have to look around with a different eye view.
4. Say No to Single-Plastic Usage
Little things like informing the restaurants to not send single-use plastic spoons and forks can go a long way.
5. Donate single-use plastics to Organizations
Today, there are brands/organizations that know what to do with plastic waste. They either recycle, repurpose or reuse, depending upon the resources available. Organizations like Ecokaari, accept plastic donations and convert them into eco-friendly shopping bags, wallets, home decor, and etcetera.
6. Be a Conscious, future shopper
Make better choices in the future. Start looking for alternatives for your future purchases, from packaging to the insides of the package. And in no time, you’ll be doing a lot on your end towards contributing to less wastage.
7. Declutter without creating waste
Give out the clothes which no longer fit you to people who need them. Honestly, they have been lying in your wardrobe for too long now, isn’t it? Distribute them to your domestic help, people who do not have a shelter.
8. Return, Refill, Reuse!
Buy once, keep reusing! There are brands which let you return your containers, refill them for you so that you don’t have to buy the same product over and over again.
The goal should not be to go zero-waste overnight! Truth is, you can’t. We still use Plastic Electronics (TV, Laptop, etc). Can you get rid of it? No. Therefore, our focus should rather be more on reducing our consumption of plastics in our day-to-day lives and being a conscious consumer who is mindful of their future purchases. We should have a responsibility to try and reduce our waste footprint individually.