Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Chang the World Wednesday - Zero Waste

The challenge for the next couple of weeks is all about going to zero waste instead of just reducing your carbon footprint.    You can read more about it at Reduce Footprints.

For this challenge, please consider all the ways in which you can achieve a zero impact. For example, reducing paper towel use is going green ... not using them at all is zero impact. Driving less is going green ... not driving at all and walking instead is zero impact. Adjusting your thermostat for the season is going green ... not turning it on at all is zero impact. The idea is to search out those changes which will, in terms of that particular action, eliminate your impact on the earth. Once you've identified the activity, try it out and see if you can maintain the zero impact through the end of the month. And, of course, we want to hear all about it.

Or ...

If you don't feel that you can achieve a zero impact on any of your activities, then please find at least one area where you can reduce your impact significantly. And yep, we want to hear all about it.

That's hard folks!  Do you think you could do it? I'm not sure I can.  I tried to start reducing the amount of paper towels and napkins we use.  I normally grab a rag and we use cloth for napkins. Actually, what's funny is that for napkins we use dish clothes my Mom knitted me. I don't use them to wash the dishes with, I use a sponge, so I just grabbed one to wipe my hands one day and really liked it.  Anyway, what I was going to say was that while I don't normally use paper in the kitchen lately I have been.   My dog was very ill, to the point that she had 2 surgeries and was rushed to the hospital 3 times.  We had some messes to clean up on the floor. While we use cloth to wipe up any normal "accidents" we used the paper towels to clean up the blood and horrible vomit.    When we have people over for dinner, we end up using paper napkins instead of cloth. However I think that is because we don't have enough cloth to go around.

As far as other things.  For the most part we get eggs from a person who raises them in their backyard.  So we aren't buying them from the store and getting egg cartons.  However I can't even say that is zero waste because every once in awhile I do run out of eggs and have to get some at the store because I don't have time to wait for this person to get me some (it takes a couple of days usually). 

I'm working on making even more of my own cleaning supplies, however there is still waste involved because I have to buy some supplies still.

I live too far from where I work to get around using a car (it's 25 miles one way). 

I use cloth diapers for R, however not at night.  So we aren't even zero waste as far as diapers go.

I'm going to keep checking though!  I'll be more vigilant the rest of this week and next to see if there are ways our household could go zero waste.

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