Today, we close in on the 5th day of the 30 day zero waste challenge. Less than 20% complete: so much has been done and so much left to be done. But pushing through always! Right now, I am working on a layout to give this blog some…structure. Dare I say, structure=f(x)? ~☆
Here is the layout:
- Week 1= Recycling
- Week 2= Composting
- Week 3= DIY products
- Week 4= Dumpster Diving (more on this later!)
Still on Week 1 and I would say it is about 75% successful. 3/4 of the materials are successfully recycled every time: aluminum cans, glass bottles, and plastic containers. It’s that bottle deposit incentive, I suppose.
To incentivize with paper, one would need 40 lbs, or 18.14 kg of paper for $1 ($0.025/ lb). How it was listed online was $50/ ton. Just a truckload of paper that is not feasible for a studio apartment. So, sticking with the Recycling Center.
Now, let’s proceed with donations! According to SFGate, 2.5 billion lbs. of fabric were kept from landfills in 2006 by thrift shops like the one I am visiting that sell recycled clothing. In addition, this drives the costs down for selling and re-purchase. Environmentally, it keeps pesticides, petroleum, and water usage for making new clothes altogether.
First up, Saver’s. Frankly, I’m more of a Goodwill girl myself, but Saver’s was closer.
Today I de-cluttered and am getting rid of the following:
1. a Chinese New Year lantern
2. An organic chemistry textbook from college
3. A cutting board
4. Rubber utensils that are rainbow colored
5. A reusable water bottle
6. A bag of clothes
Surprisingly, they accepted all of it.
In the spirit of the tax return season, make sure to keep the receipt they hand you afterwards for your files. When the government asks about your charitable activity, one can list their donations, with a receipt as proof. A small portion goes towards the tax refund. It just goes to show, anything is better than throwing your stuff away.
Next up, Whole Foods.
I’m just more comfortable with leaving cans & bottles at their customer service desk. I went to Star Market a couple of days ago and they said that the recycling was closed, which was strange since the rest of the store was open for another 2 hours. So I just do it at Whole Foods. Also there are more bulk item options there.
After that, returning Christmas gifts with the tags still on them at nearby stores. If not, I will regift or give to Salavtion Army.
If there is still time before work, the last on the list is a food pantry. I have a huge tub of leftover whey protein my roomie had before turning to plant protein powders. Some free samples when I worked at a health food store. They include anti-wrinkle creams, holistic anti-anxiety supplements, vegan protein powders, and a banana bread mix that expired. I will soon find out if this is acceptable. If not, into the compost it goes!
After these past few days, I have to say I feel a lot lighter, less burdened by consumerism. Before I went shopping, I would be overcome by the things I wanted in the moment. The shiny tech stuff. The tasty stuff. The things covered in kawaii glitter. Now, I give the purchase a couple of days to rest. Usually in that time, half of the instant gratification buys end up dying. Or I forgot entirely about it.
The downside is that food tends to be not…processed. Obviously. But the sugar crash is brutal. The studies are true, sugar is more addictive than cocaine. Also, in terms of going out, you’re more clunky than the average individual with your jars and bottles. Also I still have trash:
*insert photo here*
Just not as much.
Signing off for now,
Has anyone ever watched How It’s Made?