WASTE FREE LIVING
ITS PLASTIC FREE JULY and there has been an enormous amount of Social Media and publicity around this global initiative. The facts are scary; plastic is being dumped in the oceans at alarming rates, and we all need to take action to help our planet.
There are so many ways we can make a difference. If we can all make small changes on a daily basis and be conscious of what we purchase and consume, habits can start to form which will benefit our environment.
From composting scraps to sorting out rubbish into various piles to recycle, there are hundreds of small steps we can take.
To help you on your Waste Free Journey we have compiled a list of suggestions of ways you can transition into a cleaner way of living…
But firstly, for your own sake – establish a reason why you want to live waste free. Are you an avid nature lover who is heartbroken when you see a bird who has choked on a piece of litter? Are you simply trying to preserve the Earth for future generations? Find a reason to do whole-heartedly what you are doing, and you will find it easier to stick to.
Here are a few suggestions to living a more Waste-Free life:
- Compost those scraps. Instead of creating more landfill by throwing away every piece of rubbish, consciously create a compost heap in your garden where you can dispose of compostable waste. The benefit is two-fold. By composting, you create your own nutrient rich organic material to use in your garden, whilst reducing the amount thrown away. Any peels, skins from fruits and vegetables, eggshells, teabags, coffee grinds, green leafy garden waste, and other hardier garden refuse can be composted. Layers of waste are built up, and decay over time to create beautiful rich fertile compost. Start indoors with a composting bin or Bokashi bin, into which scraps are thrown. The Plus side to a Bokashi bin, is even meat products can be tossed in. Click |HERE| to read more about Bokashi bins. Click |HERE| to find table top composting bins, beautiful enough for any kitchen!
- Take shopping bags with you to the shops. Instead of buying plastic bags every time you shop, buy some canvas ones and start keeping one or two in your bag or car. Click |HERE| to view. Recycled bags are also available to purchase from major retail outlets. We at Lifestyle Home Garden also have some gorgeous totes! See below!
- Find a market to purchase unpackaged fresh fruit and vegetables from, instead of ready packaged or chopped up fruit. Many dairies also offer fresh milk and jogurt by weight, and customers can bring their own glass bottles or containers to fill on a weekly basis. Alternatively find a veggie box delivery service. There are plenty around who offer fresh vegetables, fruit and farm fresh milk (in glass) right to your door. Click |HERE| or |HERE| to have a look!
- Consider bringing your glass bottles to glass recycling plants. Take the paper labels off and recycle separately. Opt for wine with cork tops as apposed to plastic screw tops, if you can.
- Meal prep at home and take to work in reusable containers, instead of buying takeaways in single-use styrofoam. Make coffee at home and use a reusable mug or flask to transport. Just think of all the money you will save just in these two simple steps, whilst also doing your part for the environment.
- Buy consumables in glass. For example, tomato sauce or pasta sauces in glass containers can be washed out and the containers reused for storing bits and bobs around the house, or for re-homing all your baking or other dry ingredients in the kitchen.
- Gone are the days of plastic cling wrap. Faithful to Nature sells beautiful locally made Supa Wraps made of Shweshwe fabrics. They replace clingwrap and can be used to wrap cheese, veggies or any leftovers, and can be wiped clean and hung out to dry, ready for the next use. Click |HERE| to check them out.
- Grow your own! Growing your own vegetables, fruit, and herbs is a therapeutic way of harvesting your own fresh produce, and eliminates the plastic packaging that store-bought goods come in. Lifestyle Home Garden sells a vast array of seedlings and seeds. Feel free to check out online seed varieties too, which come in paper packaging and are heirloom! Click |HERE| to purchase.
- Pet food cans can be recycled! Remove the paper labels, wash out the cans and either recycle with other tin/aluminium waste or punch holes in the bottoms and use as planters for herbs or veggies.
The important thing is to remember that leading a waste free life takes time!
As and when you feel ready, start to make small changes. There is no need to guilt yourself into buying everything you need to be waste free all in one go. Take one aspect of your life and change it slowly.
Remember too, the purpose behind the action. Remind yourself of the importance and relevance of the changes you are making, both to your Earth and for future generations.
WE hope that you feel empowered to start Living Waste free! Have a look at the fabulous change makers we found on social media who are taking a stance and leading their communities by living waste free to their best ability!
Zero Waste Journey in South Africa is a Group on Facebook dedicated to cleaning up our collective act. The Kind Planet is a blog on how to live more mindfully. With more than 130000 hashtags on Instagram, #PlasticfreeJuly is a reminder that this initiative really is most important all over the world.
Remember that long after Plastic Free July ends, your Plastic and Waste Free Living journey continues.