March is here (in like a lamb out like a lion maybe?) and as it always does it brings ideas of spring and spring cleaning. we need to make space for fresh new energy. the best to do that long term is to think about what we bring in.
habits we practice at the household level have a huge impact on reducing waste. believe it or not, it’s possible to leave very little on the curb – check out Bea of www.zerowaste.com and Lauren of trash is for tossers for leading edge examples. these two mavericks have waste reduction down to a science and an art. as well as being very dedicated, they live in centres where facilities exist that make their choices practical. great ideas! and although all the facilities don’t exist (ie, we can’t bring jars to the brewery to get filled with beer), there are many things we can do to reduce waste.
this is a mash-up of suggestions of living the waste-free lifestyle from Bea and Lauren, with a bit of local practical knowledge thrown in.
- what’s in the trash? – have a look at what’s in the bin. if you’re the greater St. John’s metro area, figure out what can be recycled (cans, cartons, bottles, etc, check the city of St John’s recycling program), what can be composted like organic waste – check out the Botanical Gardens,, what really shouldn’t be going to the trash at all (hazardous waste), check out Eastern Waste Management , what can be rehabilitated or donated (check out Habitat for Humanity ReStore – link updated and other donation-seeking organizations). For all of it, all over the province check out rethink waste. like their website says, “RethinkWasteNL.ca provides Newfoundlanders and Labradorians with easy access to everything we need to know about managing our waste – all on one website.”
- when buying, buy package-free and/or bulk – sometimes the packaging is recyclable, but even if it still takes work to recycle it. less is more! You can visit the Bulk Barn to buy in bulk or you can go to the Food for Thought store as well, and shop the markets. the St. John’s Farmers’ Market doesn’t run in winter, but the Winter Market and Some Good Market do!
- the best way to avoid food waste is to prepare the right volume of food for your family, and eat it. (easier said that done.) cooking and baking at home (having minimized packaging at the purchase phase) leads to less waste!
all of these ideas can add up to a huge difference to what hits the curb. and when the demand is there to create more infrastructure to reduce even further.
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