In 2017, according to official statistics, we have formed 10 million tons of household waste across the country. At the same time, refuse incinerator worked only in the capital, and it was able to dispose only a quarter of Kiev's garbage, and almost all the other waste of our fellow citizens got to the landfill. Back to back years. It is not surprisingly that situation of our spoil disposals is fearful.

But if everyone sorted their household waste, they would send at least 60% less for disposal. Throwing valuable recyclables - waste paper, scrap iron, plastic - is too wasteful and destructive for nature. It worries many people so much that they decided not to wait until the state put things in order, and started acting on their own: to collect and hand over different fractions of garbage separately.

But it is even more important not to recycle, but to reduce the amount of garbage which we produce. After all, it is purely not where it is cleaned, but where it is not littered. Maybe that's why in all over the world more and more adherents of Zero Waste way of life? If you also think that you need to start from yourself and everyone’s effort are valuable, learn more about the principles of this life philosophy and what you can do even if you are not ready to change your habits radically.

Zero Waste: a bit of history

When Bea Johnson, the author of Zero Waste concept, had to simplify life in connection with the move, she realized that she could easily do without 80% of her things. At the same time, she came across information about the "zero waste" approach in some enterprises. All this prompted Bea to make her life more ecological. The Johnson family developed 5 rules that helped to achieve such amount of garbage generated in one year, which will be placed in a jar:

  • Refuse
  • Reduce
  • Reuse
  • Recycle
  • Rot.

About this family told some popular publications, and Beah started a blog. And for more than 10 years, many people have followed their example. If you think out an action plan for each step in your conditions, in exactly this order, then you will be able to significantly reduce the amount of garbage!

What is available for zirovaysters Ukraine

Although the first steps towards to organize sorting of garbage in our country are already taking place, in most of the settlements there are no separate garbage cans for different types of waste. In this case, supporters of a greener lifestyle are looking for opportunities to sort the garbage.

What is the garbage of a residents in Ukraine? More than a third of all solid household waste that we create is organic, in other words, food waste. About a quarter more - plastic and paper. If they are "curbed", the amount of garbage that we throw out every day will be immediately reduced.

There are enterprises in Ukraine that process scrap iron, plastic, glass, waste paper and even tetrapack. Unfortunately, some of them are forced to buy recycled materials abroad, because there are not enough resources that are properly sorted from our citizens. Although recycling points where you can take these types of valuable waste are working. Therefore, zerowasters ready to sort to load these plants by work.

Also, if desired, especially in large cities, you can hand over hazardous waste for disposal. There are public organizations and enthusiasts who accept recyclables that are difficult to settle for recycling (polypropylene “shurshiki”, multilayer packaging, etc.), as well as charitable organizations where you can donate unnecessary clothes, shoes, bedding, toys, etc.. Something as useless can be sold or simply present to someone. And get rid of books with bookcrossing.

More and more people are composting organic waste even in the city. Peelings can be composted in an enamelled bucket and bury in a garden-beds, dry, chop or take to the nearest forest. Or maybe you will find another option?

Some manufacturers take responsibility for the disposal of containers, for example, "DeLaMark" Company accepts plastic packaging for recycling from under its liquid products.

So, we have opportunities to reduce our ecologic trace and make sure that as little as possible of garbage goes to landfills, although they sometimes turn into a quest. Try to go through it?

First steps for freedom from garbage - how it looks in practice

Ziroveister is not just a person who uses fashionable attributes: a net-bag or eco-bag, a thermocup in which he buys coffee-to-go, a reusable water bottle and of course a bamboo toothbrush. He is the one who thinks about his way of life in order to reduce his resources and waste production to the maximum. According to the experience of those who tends to zero waste, almost all disposable things have reusable alternatives.

But don’t buy something new, even ecofrendly, while the old thing can still serve. Ask yourself the question: "Do I really need it or just want to?" Remember the 5 rules from Bea Johnson - in the first positions of refuse and reduction!

If conscience prompts you to change something, and these impending changes in lifestyle scares you, don’t think that you can change everything at once. Implement ecology habits gradually, in small steps. Do not forget to reward yourself for success.

Agree with yourself that you will work every week on just one new change. For example, on first week you refuse a bag wherever possible: when buying bananas, a single lemon or cabbage, etc., because they are packed with nature, and the sticker can be glued to the fruit or vegetable itself.

At the second week, give preference to goods in recyclable packaging, which you can actually deliver as recyclable or reused. For example, choose cereals or pasta in cardboard, and not in “shurshik”, sauces - in glass, and not in doypack. Be prepared for the fact that sometimes you have to choose longer and sometimes pay more than you did before. Let you be inspired by the realization that you influence the manufacturer by voting with the Hryvnia for more ecofriendly packaging and make a small investment in the protection of nature. And the reward will be that the products that you choose are likely to be more useful and better.

At the third week, plan your purchases and think what kind of packaging you will need. Take it with you. And so on. After some time, you will find that several ecology practices have become part of your life.

Step-by-step begin to sort the waste. For example, take batteries and housekeepers for recycling. Find out where you can attach waste paper and other recyclables. Find out how organic matter can be composted in your environment. It is possible to organize separate collection of waste even in a small city apartment!

Before you throw a thing, think about how to give it a second life or to whom give it. Perhaps someone will be grateful for her.

Be inspired by examples of eco-activists. They lead a full life, although they have implemented eco-habits. If you are in their community, at least virtually, then soon their course of action will seem natural. For example, the first practical eco-blogger of Ukraine, Marianna Boyko, known for the “104 days without polyethylene” project, shares her small victories over garbage on the pages of her website and on social networks and infects her with enthusiasm.

Someday all people will be responsible for the waste they produce, and there will be an order all over the planet as in countries where garbage has already won. We have no other way. And you will aware that in this there is your small contribution.

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