Waste not want not

Waste not want not

In a world seemingly overwhelmed by plastic waste and in the midst of a climate emergency, members of the public, green campaigners and policymakers alike know that recycling alone will not solve the problem.

Social media has highlighted issues around food packaging in recent years; pictures of peeled bananas in single-use packaging and oranges wrapped in plastic have caused uproar. If only nature had invented something to cover them, I hear you scream...

On a positive note it seems to be that changing the simplest things in our day to day lives can make the biggest difference.

Here, we share some tips on how to get started. If you can make a commitment to change these small things, you'll be doing some serious good for the planet, future generations, and maybe even saving some money along the way!

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Refuse

We are bombarded by opportunities to consume. Whether it's free samples, plastic bags and receipts from shops, each instance brings more unwanted stuff into our homes. At the same time, each also brings a new chance to say, "No, thank you." Here are some ways you can start refusing:

  • Avoid single-use items
  • Pass up freebies unless they are truly useful to you
  • Unsubscribe from mailing lists that encourage you to buy more than you need
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Reduce

Reducing what we own helps us evaluate our past consumption habits, pare down belongings, give things on to those who need them, and helps us to shift our mindset when it comes to new purchases. Simple ways to reduce include:

  • Donate, sell or swap unwanted items
  • Share, borrow, or rent items
  • Consider the life cycle of your potential purchases - ask yourself can it be reused, recycled, or composted?
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Reuse

Did you know that the average single-use item is used for just thirty seconds or less before being thrown away? Here are some great things you can do to avoid generating waste:

  • Create a basic reusable kit:
    - Tote bag - water bottle - metal straw
  • Shop second-hand, there are real bargains to be had in your local charity shop
  • Repair what you have - this could help to support a local repairs business too!

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