Today, garbage is so much apart of our lives. We live in a 'disposable' world, where things have a single use purpose + items are made for the landfill. It's really become second nature to us, that most don't really think about it. As a society, we've become so detached from the trash we create. When we throw things away, that's the end of them in our mind. We go about our daily activities without giving what we've discarded a second thought. In reality though, our trash is far from gone. Most everything that is thrown away as 'garbage' are tossed into landfills, shipped + dumped into someone else's backyard or tragically end up in the ocean, causing disruption and death to our sea life.
The average person generates about 4.3 pounds of garbage waste in one day. Approximately 55% of 220 million tones of waste generated each year in the U.S., ends up in one of the over 3,500 landfills. Of course, not everything ends up there. Like we talked about earlier, much of it ends up in the oceans. Not to mention locally, adding to the pollution for our water ways as well.
Don't worry though!
We are not here to focus on the doom + gloom of our bad habits as a society. We are going to give you _ easy steps you can take personally to reduce your waste!
1. PLASTIC BAG
Swap out any plastic bags for reusable ones! This could be a canvas tote, basket or any reusable bag. Many stores now sell reusable bags + encourage their use! In order to make sure end up actually using them, keep one or two in your car trunk or in your purse or pocket at all times. This way you'll always be ready to avoid plastic bags. You can get one >>> here
2. DITCH WATER BOTTLES
Not all together, just the disposable plastic ones! Bottle waters are not recommend anyway for health reason because of the chemical ridden plastics they're made of. In addition though, only about 20% of them actually get recycled. Yep - the rest go to landfill or the ocean. Get yourself a good reusable water bottle + refill as needed! These are much more cute + will end up saving you a lot of money as well. We like ones from >>> Klean Kanteen, Life Factory + Hydroflask
3. AVOID TO-GO UTENSILS
Instead of getting, using + tossing the plastic utensils they give you along with take-out food, use real silverware! You can either wait to each it at home where you have easy access to a fork + knife or you can carry a small set with you. You can get a cheap pair at any second hand store local to you. Or you can also get a metal 'spork' to carry with you with multi function.
A high percentage of trash that goes to the landfill is actually good waste. You can cut down your waste significantly if you compost. Rather than tossing kitchen scraps + yard trimmings in the garbage, try taking up composting! That's where you let things rot so they can be turned into nutritious soil. Don't have the time or room to do that? No problem! Simply take advantage of your compost bin your city provides or collect your food scraps through the week + take them to a farmers market that has a community compost bin.
(Photo taken from trashisfortossers.com)
Invest in reusable alternatives to replace your disposable products. Reuse things as much as possible! This can include swapping out disposable razors for a reusable safety razor, cotton balls for cotton cloth rounds, glass jars for storing food in. The list goes on. We always say, "any effort is better than no effort." You may not be able to seize producing trash all together, but you can reduce it! These are just some of the things we do, but there are many others. Tell us any other ways you reduce your waste in the comments!
Written by: Cassidy Avalo