By now you’ve probably noticed that I’ve been doing quite a few different challenges recently. I enjoy the sense of purpose, it gives me a goal to strive towards. However, I think the one I have just started might be my toughest challenge yet. Starting on the 5th through to the 9th September is Zero waste week, then the week after it is Recycle week.
So how do you manage a whole week without any waste? The objective this year is to specifically cut down on as much food waste as possible. I have decided to take it one step further and try to cut down on as much waste as I can, plus keep it up for the month and see what I can learn. Before I started to read up on zero waste week, I thought I did a good job of minimising waste. I recycle what I can, use the local recycling plant, free cycle and charity donations. However, thinking more on this, we do still routinely fill our landfill wheely bin which is collected fortnightly, this is one thing I have decided I am going to make a concerted effort to reduce.
In terms of preparing for this challenge I started with the only way anybody finds anything these days, I Googled it of course. I pretty quickly found Rea Strauss, Bea Johnson and Kathryn K, I have been reading their blogs and social media posts quite a lot over the last few weeks and they all have some great ideas that I would definitely recommend you checking out.
One suggestion from the Rubbish Diet was to have a good clear out, their mantra being reduce, reuse and recycle.
With the clear out in mind I now have a lot of recycling, a pile for the charity shop, a few items that have been mended and my son and I finally did the Car Boot sale I’ve been promising my husband we would do for the last 8 years last Sunday.
So once the clear out was completed what was next?
After some research I found that I can’t recycle any plastics besides plastic bottles because there isn’t a single option for me to recycle plastics within a 20 mile radius. My next research was based around wh?I have read a lot on the subject but I’m still no more knowledgeable as to why more local authorities don’t fully recycle plastics. I can see that my neighbouring council, Cheshire West and Chester have a much more substantial recycling policy ranging from food trays to batteries, foil, cooking oils, spectacles and small electricals. I definitely think Flintshire needs to look into making some improvements to what they’re doing.
In the meantime I’ve also been making sure to buy food with as little packaging as possible. Where can you buy food without twice as much packaging as you need? I have had an Abel and Cole veg box on and off for many years. Over the last few years I’ve noticed an increased amount of packaging even in my veg boxes. I did get a reply from Abel and Cole in response to my queries on the subject, but similarly to the plastic recycling research I’m still not sure why they feel the need to pack celery into plastic. Due to their packing I’ve cancelled my veg box and I’ve been visiting farmers market more .
I have bought my cleaning products in bulk for some time, so I’m doing what I can here without making my own. I did go overboard with my bulk buy this time, wonder how lo,g it will take too go through 15 litres of washing liquid and fabric conditioner.
I’ve stopped using cotton wool, no more plastic sandwich bags, no more kitchen roll.
I thought I was good with my toiletries, but I think I could still improve here. Having gone through all of my toiletries and makeup I noticed that a lot of plastic goes into the packaging. I’m going to make more use of Lush ,with its returnable bottles and backed products, once I have used up my current supplies, It might take me a while though…
Apologies that this is my first post in a while, I have been very busy over the last few weeks and have found it tough to find the time to get a blog done. I will try to find the time to be more consistent over the coming weeks and prove an update at the end of Zerowaste Week.