Sunday, 14 September 2008

Day 7

We went to the cinema this afternoon and bought a couple of bars of Divine chocolate to keep us going until dinnertime. The paper outer and foil inner wrappers would have been recyclable but I didn't catch my older daughter in time before she popped them both in a litter bin. Taking litter home with us (where possible and when there are no recycling facilities around) is going to take getting used to.

Today's bin contains:
  • 2 x plastic wrappers from some carrots
  • a seal from a Tate & Lyle's tin of golden syrup
  • an empty Sainsbury's tomato puree tube
  • a plastic bag from Sainsbury's light soft brown sugar
  • 2 x plastic sachets from 2 fairtrade teabags we were given somewhere/sometime and which I was using up
  • a little plastic tag from a recently purchased item of clothing
  • a piece of broken plastic clothes peg
  • an old twisty that's too short to be of any use
  • a plastic seal from a carton of Tesco's soured cream

Tubes are a problem. I could switch to tins for tomato puree but they don't keep as well, though I suppose I could get round that by freezing the puree in ice cube trays.

Plastic seals around lids are annoying. I know they are designed to prevent tampering. However if that's your game there must surely be easier ways to do so then opening a lid, contaminating the contents and replacing the lid!

Freebies are hard to refuse but are often wasteful of resources. So I'm going to have to learn to politely decline.

I tried wooden clothes pegs but they deteriorated in the rain and left marks on my clothes.

Anyway, today marks the end of my first week. I'm reasonably pleased with my progress. I haven't hit zero waste - even for a day - but I have increased my awareness of what I consume and what I throw away, which is a good start.

Before I sign off for the day I would like to acknowledge the friends who have set me on this zero waste journey. It all started in March of this year when the Observer published its list of the world's 50 most powerful blogs, including (at no 34) Bean Sprouts. I popped in and met Melanie Rimmer who got me thinking about waste. She directed me to Almost Mrs Average and her Rubbish Diet, who in turn pointed me towards Mrs Green and My Zero Waste. I was amazed by their passion for recycling (amongst a host of other interests) and inspired to give it a go myself. So when I discovered, via the Pigeon, that Bristol was to run its own Zero Waste Challenge Week - well there was no excuse.

If you've dropped in and would like to give it a go you couldn't find three better mentors. Click on the links above or on the left sidebar to meet them for yourself.

4 comments:

Mrs Green said...

what a successful first week. Like you say 'AWARENESS' is the first step. Because then you have a choice of what to do next.

You're doing really well - keep up the great work and I'm looking forward to reading how you get on this week.

Thank you for the mention too - I appreciate it and I know Mrs A does too :)

Mrs G x

ALMOST MRS AVERAGE said...

Hi Gareth - LOL - Taking litter home with you is one of those things you get used to. One day, I must tell the story about how I managed to get my posh friend to even take some glass bottles home with her.

Those plastic seals are a bit tricky. I've noticed more and more products are using a paper seal these days, which is like a tab connecting the lid to the container. However, it's mainly on glass jars or bottles.

Thanks for the mention. It's been great having you visit and making the many suggestions. :-D

jen said...

I agree - freebies are hard to refuse. The hardest one for me was giving up paper towels. The automatic impulse to grab one after washing my hands is much stronger than one would imagine.

As for your clothespegs. What are they doing out in the rain anyway? If you keep them in a container when you're not using them, they don't rot, and you end up with mark-free clothing.

just Gai said...

One week down and I'm still enjoying it. Keep your comments coming.

You know Jen, I hadn't thought of paper towels. I guess I considered they were alright because they're made of paper but if they're not recycled, which I don't imagine they are, then I guess they end up in a landfill. We use them where I work and I must get through a fair number every day.

As for my clothes pegs. I guess it's just for convenience that I leave them on the line. But I'm sure you're right that they'd last longer if I brought them all in. So first thing tomorrow morning ...