The Journey of Reducing Our Landfill Waste

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  1. Great article Masa! Thanks for sharing!! I’m so related to you! I’ve felt that exact need to find balance between the guilt of buying or making my own! I’d rather make my own to minimise processed foods and packaging, but then I’d spend too much time kitchen! and not that I don’t love my time in the kitchen but I do 12-hour shift work so it’s not always that practical or realistic as you’ve mentioned!
    I’m vegan already, on my way to minimalism & reducing my waste as much as possible. We sort out our bins. We use recycle bin and scrunch soft plastics and take them to Coles and Woolworths. However, here in WA I think the “ban the bag” efforts have to be more strict as “reusable” plastic bags are still available for 15cents! Some people don’t hesitate at all buy them as if the plastic issue was about being able to afford it or not! it is not about affording it but stop using it…

    I also tend to have a quick scan on other people’s trolleys (cannot help it at times!) and feel sad when seeing in advance so much future rubbish!

    As you said, sometimes I feel dissapointed by looking how others seem just not care! That won’t make me stop doing my part at all, I will always do my best to reduce my impact…

    Additionally, I work in a big company that is supposed to comply environmental policies and yet even managers don’t pay much attention to excessive unnecessary plastics, not willing to minimise it, there are recycle bins and I still have had to remind them to use them… one of them being senior environment manager, and the other one studying Environmental Sciences at university! come on! seriously!! I feel soooo frustrated as they should be the most informed, the ones full of awareness that encourage me to care more! 🙁 sorry about the rant! I kind of needed it…

    But still, I have hope for the animals and mother Earth!
    Thank you Masa!

    1. Hi Vanessa, thanks for your comment.

      I can totally understand about the use of the plastic bags, they should be banned altogether, not just sold to people.

      It can be frustrating when you see people not caring that should know better, but at the end of the day, all you can do is encourage them (without trying to be annoying, which is hard haha) and doing your bit.

      Best of luck in making a positive change in your office. M x

  2. Thank you for your post Masa.

    I really don’t like the single use plastic bags from the supermarket. I used to work for a store that handed out plastic bags and it was so sad to see how many we would go through in one day. Some customers would want everything double bagged, or would want everything in a separate bag, or even a bag for something small. And some employees would simply throw out plastic bags that weren’t even used when they started to get hard to open. Fortunately, there are some grocery stores that do not give out plastic bags anymore. Aldi’s and Lidl are two stores in the US that encourage reusable bags because they don’t provide those single-use bags.

    I’m not completely waste free, but I am definitely below average. I compost what I can and between me and my wife, we only produce one half-full garbage bag per week.

    Some cities in the US have a “pay as you throw” system to reduce waste. In order for your trash to be collected you need to put a sticker on your trash bag, while recycling is free. The stickers cost about 1 dollar in most areas. This discourages unnecessary waste and makes you consider alternatives. Do you have a similar system in Australia?

    1. Hi Dominic, thanks for sharing.
      Sad isn’t it? I would go insane having to witness that!

      That sounds great! No, I haven’t heard of anything like that here, but we should really implement it. Thanks for sharing your efforts, good on you!

  3. Does anyone have an idea how to recycle stained/torn worn out clothes? We can use only so many rags, and our neighborhood center only takes clean seasonal clothes.

    1. Great question Christy! I would consider making cloth bags for produce out of them or asking online in zero waste groups if anyone needs old/torn clothing for anything. If they are towels, animal shelters will typically take them.

  4. Josephine says:

    Thank you for this article! I needed it to help with the guilt I feel from making mistakes. I work in the conservation field and practice the big three as well, veganism/minimalism/low waste lifestyle. There are no grocery stores near me that have bulk food and I’m stuck just choosing glass and metal as much as possible. A tip for you if your composting neighbor doesn’t mind, I also take my compost to my office and they take shredded paper as well as cut/ripped up cardboard which helps balance the pH of the compost. Good luck on living a low impact lifestyle!

    1. Thanks for the extra tip Josephine! I’ve actually just joined an organic community garden in my area so will be able to compost all this myself now 🙂