My Zero Waste Journey – Getting Started

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“Refuse what you do not need;
reduce what you do need;
reuse what you consume;
recycle what you cannot refuse,
reduce, or reuse; and rot (compost) the rest.”
– 
Bea Johnson

 

After delving into minimalism and veganism in the last couple of years I am taking the next step in my search for a simpler life. I am exploring a movement that I’ve watched a lot of videos about, and have been fascinated and inspired by. I am transitioning to zero waste.

Now I’ll admit it, this is going to take a while and I may never become completely zero waste, but that’s not the point, nor a problem. It’s about trying to make as little of a negative impact on the planet as you possibly can.

It may feel a bit daunting (I feel it also), but there are many easy steps that you can take and things you can purchase to minimise your waste right now. This is my starter kit. Some of these I’ve used for a while and some I have bought recently.

Ready, set, go!

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  1. Canvas/Tote Bags: plastic bags are being phased out of major supermarkets around Australia (horray!) so in the near future it’s going to be necessary to have reusable bags for your groceries. Cheaper options can be found at your local supermarket, or clothing retailers but if you’re able to use more environmentally friendly bags like sturdy/compostable canvas bags that will last a lot longer these can be found online. I got this one (made out of Jute) from here.
  2. Produce Bags: these can be used when buying bulk food items, plus fruit and vegetables. I got these Cotton bags from The Source Bulk Foods, and the mesh ones from here.
  3. Water bottle: I highly recommend Stainless Steel (and definitely steer away from plastic.) Glass is another option that I loved for while but after smashing 2 to smithereens I started to think I didn’t deserve them anymore no matter how aesthetically pleasing they are. I got mine from Woolworths for $12 by the brand Decor.
  4. Coffee Cup: I chose to buy from the most popular brand, Keep Cup. Coffee Cups that you get from the coffee shop are one of the worst types of waste (no they cannot be recycled). The Keep Cup is affordable, a handy size and keeps your drinks warm. You can also design your own. Using a reusable coffee cup isn’t just good for the environment, it can also be great for your wallet with various cafes offering discounts for those who bring there own cups. Click here to find out who offers this in your area.
  5. Bamboo Toothbrush: plastic toothbrushes are another item that are horrible for the environment. Bamboo toothbrushes are compostable after use (apart from the bristles.) I got mine from here.
  6. Re-useable Containers: whether you get stainless steel, glass or plastic (like I currently have) it’s the perfect way to take food out with you. I’ve just grabbed numerous sizes at my local supermarket throughout the years. Soon I’m hoping to purchase some better ones from here.
  7. Cutlery: avoid using the plastic throw away cutlery they give you by bringing your own from home. Just use whatever you have. I also have some chop sticks to take if I’m going to an asian restaurant, sushi train etc.
  8. Stainless Steel Straw: similarly to cutlery plastic straws should be avoided at all cost. I bought mine from here – pair it with a straw cleaner and you’re good to go! I also bought a glass smoothie straw from Earth To Table cafe.

All these things you’ll find around your home, or are affordable and simple to buy. I hope anyone reading this will take this journey with me. 🙂


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This blog is where I (Emily Simpson) express my thoughts, share the things that bring me joy, give awareness to causes that are dear to me and try to inspire others
to live simply and consciously.

Twitter: @emily_cs
Instagram: @simplyeclare
(also @simplantbased & @simplywrittenwords)

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