The zero waste movement has taken the world by storm, improving the health of both the earth and its inhabitants by a lot. While its name can be misleading, the Zero Waste concept does not involve ridding yourself completely of any form of waste. The principles actually encourage cutting back on waste and switching, as much as possible, to eco-friendly alternatives to our daily habits. You want to hop on the Zero Waste train, but don’t know where to start? Here are 4 Zero Waste swaps you can try today.
Ditch the plastic bag and try a zero waste alternative
This might be the most widespread advice on helping save the environment. As small and trivial as it may sound, it goes a long way. Plastic bags are strangling our environment and choking our fauna. They are everywhere: in our oceans, our rivers and our soil. You name a place and there have probably been plastic bags sighted there.
You might want to keep a few spare paper or cotton bags in your backpack, car, purse, so you never have to resort to buying plastic bags from the store. Additionally, it may surprise you to know that most retail stores sell reusable bags for your fruits and vegetables. They are very cheap and last a long time. Keep a few of those around as well.
Avoid fast fashion
Fast fashion is an industry manufacturing and selling fashion products at incredible speed. Most low-end and some high-end clothing brands are part of this industry. This kind of mass-production is very harmful to the environment, as it consumes a lot of resources, most notably water, and produces high levels of pollution.
It is understandable that not everyone can afford to buy a ninety-dollar t-shirt from an eco-friendly brand and, most times, choosing not to spend your money so recklessly is the wisest choice. You can try buying second-hand or from outlet stores. They offer a wide range of clothes to choose from.
That is not to say you should avoid retailers at all costs. You should just try being a responsible buyer and purchase only articles you know you love and will definitely use for a long time.
Use energy responsibly
During the last decades, our world has become dependent on fossil fuels. All the energy we need to power our machines, turn on our lights and light the dark screens of our devices comes from fossil fuels. They have become such an integral part of our day-to-day lives that sometimes we fail to notice how destructive they are. They have not only brought about global warming, but also intoxicated the air that we breathe.
To reduce your carbon footprint, you can turn on the lights only when necessary, plan your travel routes ahead when driving and use public transport when and if possible. If you want to go even further, try reducing the time spent on your phone and computer and replace it with time for your hobbies.
In my opinion, this is the most important swap and it makes a huge difference. Locally-made products not only help the environment but also support the growth of small businesses. Big, notorious companies are often the cause of high levels of air pollution and water contamination.
There are many products you can buy locally, no matter where you live. Do you need fruits, vegetables, or dairy products? Take a turn at the department store and head for the farmer’s market. The products sold by farmers are often healthier and cheaper. Do you need to bring a gift to a friend’s party? Look for your nearest stationery. Looking for reading material? Set out towards your local old book store. It is as simple as that.
Looking to be more eco-friendly? Check out this article!