Going to zero waste, much easier than you think
Zero waste means "zero waste", but also "zero waste".
It is about leading a life in which no waste (definition of the term) is produced and no raw materials are wasted. All raw materials that are used and no longer needed should be reused or recycled . In the optimal case, a closed resource cycle is created. We are far from all that.
Trash is created when items are no longer needed and are discarded out of carelessness or convenience. Or it is combined with other materials in such a way that recycling is impossible, limited or difficult .
Currently, most plastic products are simply recycled into lower quality material or incinerated. Especially if it takes too long and costs too much, the raw materials end up in the garbage and thus in the waste incineration plant or even on the landfill.
How zero waste works
The concept of "zero waste" aims to counteract this phenomenon.
Originally, the concept of zero waste was based on three commandments: Refuse, reduce and reuse, but today this is a utopia and is therefore not possible.
Stefanie Kiessling shows the six rules. They are more of a help than a dogma in nature.
It is exactly this order that is important!
Refuse, Do Not Accept and Avoid
Make sure trash can't populate your home in the first place! Anything unwanted and unnecessary such as packaging, promotional mailings or sample packs as gifts should not be accepted at all! Even children come home quickly with little things that they no longer look at after an hour. Just think of gifts for children's birthday party guests! Write a letter to your surroundings and guests and act accordingly when shopping. Buy tissue bags, insulated bottles and Lunch Boxes, no more plastic water bottles and sandwich wraps from the supermarket!
The Lunch Boxes on our MaLunchBox website have a variety of styles, you are bound to find one to your liking!
If the link in the image does not work, click here to access the site
If the image link does not work, click here to discover the collection
If the image link does not work, click here to discover the collection
Do I need this? This question must be internalized in daily life. Conscious consumption is the key word here. Consume only the amount needed. This way you save resources. And you wouldn't believe how much you don't need. A private household throws away 30% of its food per month. 30%, which are useless, if you ask yourself this question while shopping, only buy what you need for the next few days. A meal plan or shopping list is helpful in this regard. Don't be fooled by the advertising!
And think practically : does my water have to be transported from somewhere else to my house, packaged in bottles, by the number 1 producer of microplastics (vehicle traffic) or do I just have to draw it from the tap ? Whoever drinks it willingly with carbonic acid, falls back on a water bubbler. Not only do you save money (bottled water costs about 50 times more), but you also save 30 kg of C02 per person per year.
The "non-food" is also cleverly placed by discounters among grocery products. Also ask yourself the following question: do I really need it? And if so: can't I get it used ?
Buying used doesn't just save money and resources. Another question also arises: can I borrow it ? Books are a typical example. Most of the time, we only read them once. Then you can also borrow them and save money.
But you can also reduce in the household: If you own less, you have to maintain less. This saves resources and money.
The best example of reuse is the second-hand store or the flea market. Many used items are still in pristine condition and can be reused. After all, this practice is common for children's clothing, why not in other areas?
The jam jars can be reused for freezing, as storage jars, lanterns, or spice containers, and even the egg carton isn't broken after just one use. Classics like razor, sturdy cups and oilcloth instead of cling film can be used again and again.
But recycling doesn't just have to happen at home. With reusable bottles or reusable containers (eg yoghurt, vinegar, drinks) the industry also offers a way.
With cars, computers or washing machines, as soon as they break down, we usually think of repairing them and not throwing them away. But if the objects are not so "precious", like a kettle, clothes or a cheap sports watch, we are easily inclined to throw them in the trash. But it doesn't have to be . Some skills can be easily acquired these days. The internet with do-it-yourself videos, friends and acquaintances are at your disposal. The important thing is to take the time and try. By the way, you can borrow tools.
If you are really stuck, a repair café can help you (list of repair cafés in Germany and addresses for the Rosenheim region). Here you can have your items repaired for free . Sometimes you can't imagine how cheap it is to fix a hole in your winter coat, for example. Last time we paid 5 euros including sealing. You can't get a new jacket for that. It is worth trying!
Recycling is handled differently by county. Some offer the yellow bin, where recyclables and plastic waste can go, or the blue bin for paper waste, which is then collected. The others offer the Recycling Center , where citizens distribute individual raw materials into many different containers. Very often there are recycling islands for paper, glass, cans and clothes. In some communities there is also one for plastic and/orTetrapaks . Many communities post container locations on their website.
All of these products can be turned into something new and have no place in residual waste! By recycling, you save resources and also your wallet , because most of the time a family of four can go without much effort to the smallest or second smallest size of bin. Nevertheless, recycling remains only a palliative solution . It is not always possible to recover an equivalent raw material, in particular for plastics, and recycling is not always possible or economical. Also, not all plastic can be recycled.
Even if you don't have a garden, you can still use your local composting facility or, at best, you can even have your organic waste bin on your doorstep.
Since January 1, 2017, municipalities that do not have an offer of organic bins must accept composted materials in recycling centers. They first extract it from the earth or, at best, biogas.
If these rules are followed, it is easier to produce less or almost no waste and it is even possible to greatly reduce the recycling rate.
In part, too many raw materials end up in the trash because people throw them out of convenience or ignorance. But it is our duty to live sustainably and not leave a mountain of waste and toxins for future generations.
Plastic, for example, takes 400 years to rot ! And how long do we use a plastic bag? Which seems like 20 seconds. It is mainly made from petroleum. The fact that oil is a finite resource doesn't really need to be mentioned. Nor is it necessary to mention the consequences of disposable packaging and its ingredients on bodies of water and living beings, including you.
So, with our tips for getting started on a "Zero Waste" program, you can reduce your waste and live more sustainably.
Did you like our work? If so, do not hesitate to subscribe to our newsletter to receive all our news!