How to go zero-waste

This is about zero waste and how it benefits us and how we too can be zero-waste. Image is a courtesy to Orcas Recycling Services.

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How to go zero-waste

Nikita Raman, Reporter

What is zero waste? It doesn’t mean to completely stop throwing trash. It means that you try to create the least amount of trash you can. That means you have to make an extra effort in helping the environment. Trying to recycle is not the only thing you can do. You can also make your personal goal to help the environment by going zero waste. For example one of the best things to do when going grocery shopping is trying to find things with the least amount of packaging. There was a zero-waste grocery store in Austin. It was known for evolving into a beloved community hub for Austin’s green set. Sadly they recently closed down.

I decided to conduct a survey to find out whether people would take the responsibility of going zero waste and keeping it up. Here are the results I collected. I mostly everyone to say that they would love to go zero waste and help the environment. They just didn’t know how. Here are ways to go zero waste.

  • Ask for no straw in your drink order when out.
  • Don’t leave your house without a reusable water bottle.
  • Ditch tissues for handkerchiefs.
  • When buying food try to find it with the least amount of plastic/paper waste. Even if you do have trash try to recycle it.
  • Think second-hand first when purchasing something.
  • Turn old sheets and towels into handkerchiefs, rags, napkins, and cloth produce bags.
  • Build a zero waste kit and put in the trunk of your car or carry it with you when you’ll be out so you’ll always be prepared. It doesn’t have to be large just a few items.
  • Open a window to cool down your home or air it out.
  • Surround yourself with items that serve a lot of purposes to cut junk.
  • Commit to bringing your reusable bags to the store.
  • Try to bring your own boxes when going to restaurants when you know you’re going to have leftovers.
  • Use bar soap instead of liquid soap, it tends to come with less packaging.
  • Get some houseplants at a local nursery to purify your air, don’t forget to return the little plastic pots!
  • Get rid of pest naturally
  • Meal plan to avoid food waste.
  • Unplug electronics when not in use.
  • Try making tooth powder to avoid un-recyclable toothpaste tubes.
  •  Buy more locally made goods.
  • Repair something when it breaks.
  • If you’re looking for a specialty item, like camping gear or an extra table for a party, ask a friend if you can borrow one before making a purchase.
  • Plant a small garden.
  • Ask for no plastic and reused packaging materials for online orders.
  • Pack your lunch instead of eating out every day.
  • Reduce your meat consumption. If you’re not ready to go vegetarian start small: try Meatless Monday, weekday vegetarian, or even weekday vegan.
  • Learn to regrow your kitchen scraps
  • Line dry a load instead of using the dryer.
  • Try homemade.
  • Ditch plastic shower loofahs for a real loofah or a bamboo bath brush.
  • Ask for a real mug at the coffee shop when staying in.

Sure this may all seem like a hassle having to do a lot rather than just doing things as you would. But you should think about the long run. On how much the planet would benefit from us doing something like this to improve our home. There and many challenges on YouTube on how to go zero waste. One of my favorites is a woman trying to go zero waste for an entire month. From the video, you are able to see the struggles for just having to try not on make much trash in a day. This when people are able to make an extra effort we are able to help the plant and create more waste we should learn from our mistakes and try to improve them by trying it in a better way.