It’s the little victories every day that help me feel more encouraged than discouraged about the amount of waste produced by the average American household. While I am trying to constantly reduce my impact on the environment, I am also trying to casually educate my friends and coworkers of all the little things we can do to make a big difference. Here are a few recent discoveries I have made that have reduced my overall waste 🙂
bar soap for dish washing; box detergent for dishwasher
For myself, zero-waste concepts in the kitchen and bathroom have been the most impactful on creating less trash in total. As of last month, I figured out that lathering up a washcloth using a bar of soap works better than liquid soap for washing dishes! Bottled soap products always have fillers and water in them, which means we are paying a premium for the packaging (usually 15%) plus paying for water and useless chemical fillers. As for the dishwasher (which I love to use because it saves water as opposed to hand-washing dishes), the detergent cubes are almost always packaged in a plastic bag and are also highly toxic. I found Seventh Generation’s “Free and Clear” powdered detergent to work well. Pros: It’s packaged in paperboard and includes only a small aluminum pouring spout- no plastic at all. Cons: I’ve heard that Seventh Generation consistently uses ingredients that, while safe for humans to touch, can be toxic to the environment.
online movie ticket purchases
All of our local theaters recently were purchased by a larger theater chain and have updated they pre-order ticket process to include QR codes instead of any paper tickets! Almost every time I go to the movies, I now buy the tickets online so the attendant can just scan the QR code. This is pretty great for my low-waste goals because my husband and I go to the movies about once per week.
beer on tap instead of bottled or canned
No metal caps, glass bottles, aluminum cans, or paperboard boxes! I personally have been enjoying fliers when I go out lately.
100% wind powered apartment
Our electric company here recently started giving the option to customers to pay a small percentage more per kilowatt hour to draw 100% of their power from local windfarms! It has cost us only about $1 more per month 🙂
less shipping packing/wrapping
Amazon, Ebay, Etsy… most websites you order products from have an option of “add note to seller”. Simply let them know that you want your products shipped without styrofoam, plastic film, or any other common packing materials that don’t biodegrade.
That’s all for today- happy zero-waste-ing! 😀