Written for: Green Living SHK
Reducing your carbon footprint is not as hard as it sounds. All it needs is a little bit of thought and a great amount of consciousness. If you want to reduce wastage, you do not have to start living a Spartan life.
You can live healthily and see the world around you change for the better. It seems interesting, right! Take, for instance, your kitchen waste; instead of throwing it away, why don't you start composting?
It is one of the simplest ways of reusing, recycling, and building something new. You can always start small and find the plants in your garden flourishing with the help of your kitchen waste. Composting can provide the plants in your garden with all the necessary nutrients most organically and naturally possible. You will be reducing wastage and decreasing your dependence on chemical fertilizers. You will see a marked change in the growth of your plants and their capacity to produce blooms. So next time, instead of throwing away your coffee grounds, use them as compost and fertilizer for your plants.
There are several other ways that you can reduce wastage and decrease your carbon footprint. Some of these are as follows:
1. Start with your kitchen
The first place you should start your journey of 'how to zero waste’ is your kitchen. If you look around your kitchen, you will find several products to convert into zero-waste products.
For example, you can be more continuous and careful about the dishwashing brush that you use in your kitchen. The natural tendency is to purchase sponge brushes or brushes with nylon bristles. But these brushes are non-biodegradable and cannot be up-cycled. However, biodegradable kitchen brushes are made of wood, and the bristles are made of eco-friendly fibers. These brushes can be disposed of quickly, and they do not cause any harm to the environment. You can burn off the bristles if you want to, and you can separate the handles. The handles can be up-cycled, and you can reuse these as they are made of wood and they last for a long time.
Finally, you can always dispose of the entire kitchen brush without feeling guilty, as these will decompose without releasing any toxic fumes. Sponges not only increase the wastage of water but also do not decompose. Usually, these sponges are made from synthetic materials which you cannot recycle. Hence, you will have to dispose of these in the garbage, ending in the landfills and leading to more pollution. You can reduce your carbon footprint by purchasing some of the following eco-friendly kitchen brushes.
2. Using eco-friendly products in your bathroom
Just like your kitchen, you must be using brushes and scrubbers in your bathroom. Shower brushes and brushes to scrub your feet can easily be made of eco-friendly material.
You can choose shower brushes made of coir with wooden handles. Not only do these look elegant but they last longer than any nylon back scrubbers. Plastic products are the most dangerous because they do not decompose. Which then ends up in a landfill when disposing of these items. These are also not long-lasting, and you will find that your foot scrubbers break easily, especially the handles.
As a result, you will have to throw these and purchase a new one. Not only are you increasing wastage by purchasing plastic brushes, but you are also increasing your carbon footprint. This is applicable for the shower brushes and the foot cleaning brushes that you use in the bathroom. When you switch to brushes made entirely of eco-friendly products and products that decompose quickly, you are preventing the earth from further environmental pollution.
Check out our Shower Brushes collection to give you a long lasting and smooth result.
3. Reduce the use of plastic
Another mistake that many homeowners make while making purchases is using plastic. If you want to do a zero-waste shop, the first thing you should try to incorporate is reducing plastic use completely.
Single-use plastic is one of the most dangerous pollutants and the product that always ends in landfills. It does not decompose and is a bane when it comes to reducing pollution. The next time when you step out to do your grocery shopping or any other shopping, carry a reusable cloth bag or eco-friendly totes. You will find that it not only reduces wastage, but it is extremely helpful.
Reusable cloth bags are more extensive than single-use plastic bags, which means you can purchase more products. These bags are elegant to look at, and fashionable even when you are out doing grocery shopping! Many celebrities and movie stars often are seen carrying eco-friendly reusable tote bags when they are out casually shopping.
We highly recommend you to start using reusable cloth bags whenever you go shopping as this will help reduce the demand for single-use plastic in the long run and help protect our planet.
4. Decorate your home with rattan baskets
If you plan to decorate your home with bowls and baskets, you can opt for rattan baskets instead of plastic and ceramic. You must have visited homes where you have seen a beautiful glass, ceramic, or glass bowl filled with colored pebbles.
Sometimes homeowners fill these bowls with colored baubles or balls. If you decorate your home similarly, instead of using glass, ceramic or plastic bowls, you could use rattan bowls. You can put potpourri in the rattan baskets and fill the room with a lovely fragrance.
The primary reason why you should switch to rattan baskets is that if a ceramic or a glass bowl falls and breaks, you will have to dispose of all the broken parts. You cannot recycle or up-cycle the broken pieces. It unnecessarily increases wastage. But rattan baskets can be reused and recycled. You can repaint and decorate an old rattan basket to give it a completely new look.
Moreover, if you dispose of a rattan basket, you can be assured that these will decompose over time as they are biodegradable. Switching to rattan baskets to decorate your home instead of plastic, ceramic, or glass bowls can reduce wastage. Try our Rattan Baskets to give your space an elegant, fresh, and eco look.
5. Start purchasing food in bulk
When you want to create a zero-waste home, one of the things that you should do is start purchasing things in bulk. It would be best if you did this, most notably with grocery products.
One of the reasons for this is when food items or other similar products are given to you, these are packed in single-use plastic packets. For example, think of your vegetables, bread and fruits. The best way to reduce the use of this plastic would be to purchase these products in bulk and store them at your home. Then you will not have to keep going to the store every other day, wrap a few vegetables in a plastic bag and bring these to your home.
Instead, you would have a large amount of the vegetables packed in a big plastic packet to store in your refrigerator. After that, all you need to do is take the requisite amount of vegetables as and when you require and start cooking. In addition, purchasing in bulk is also recommended to reduce fuel wastage. Every time you drive to the local store, you are wasting fuel and adding to environmental pollution. By purchasing things in bulk, you would be doing your bit for the planet by reducing the single-use of plastic and wastage of fuel.
6. Start using handkerchiefs
Another thing that experts often mention is that beginners who want to do their bit for the environment and want to reduce their wastage can start by using handkerchiefs.
Paper napkins are another product that is used randomly and without much thought. It is considered biodegradable, but in the long run, it is wasteful to use paper napkins for something that you can easily do with the help of handkerchiefs. Consider a scenario where you have to wash your hand, and you need to wipe it. Your natural tendency would be to use a napkin or a wet wipe. If you are using napkins, you will find that one napkin is not enough to dry your hands, and you might end up using two or more of these napkins. The same is applicable for wet wipes. Wet wipes are often made from synthetic products, and these end up in landfills. Hence, these create more pollution than you can imagine.
It is best to replace the paper napkins and wet wipes with handkerchiefs. You can use a simple cotton handkerchief to wipe your hands dry, and you can easily wash and dry your handkerchief when you come back home. This will help reduce wastage and your carbon footprint.