Zero Waste: It’s a Lifestyle

Last month I saved all my trash in hopes to become more mindful of the waste I create. It was an extremely eye opening experience and I have learned a lot of new skills to help reduce my landfill footprint. Click here to see my rules and tips. 

So here it is… ALL the waste I created from February 2014:

IMG_4001 I generated 7 pounds of waste total and all of it ended up being recyclable except a thin piece of polystyrene that was packaged with the bathroom shelving I bought. I can’t believe I purchased the very material I am trying to ban right now!

I sent it to the recycling center anyways in hopes they would notice that people do want to recycle this petroleum product. Chip bags, chocolate wrappers, twisty ties, cardboard boxes, junk mail, almond milk containers and tea bags were main my paper waste. Carrot bags, tortilla bags, bread bags, almond milk caps and strawberry containers were my primary plastic waste. Mostly food wrapped in plastic which is a habit I can break by only shopping in bulk. My largest question is regarding berries. Where can I buy berries that are not wrapped in plastic??


junk mail flower

A large majority of my paper trash ended up being junk mail! It was wild to see how much I collected in just one month! I am not sure how to get off the junk mail list but I have heard it is hard. I took some of the junk mail and folded it into little flowers and made a headdress for my Mom. I also use it as a table cover for painting.

I also found out that I could buy honey, agave nectar, IMG_4369olive oil, almond butter and peanut butter in bulk at SLO Natural Foods Co-Op and New Frontiers. I can no longer shop at Trader Joes because they do not offer bulk food and almost all of their food is packaged (even their organic produce!).

Next month I will be crunching numbers and showing you all that buying in bulk is good for our Oceans and our wallets!


junk mail headdress


Sarah Bellum

3 thoughts on “Zero Waste: It’s a Lifestyle

  1. Nicely done. I should perhaps try that myself, although it would be difficult because I eat out a fair bit. No tissues though? Or dirty napkins? Or do you just use handkerchiefs and linens?
    And that’s a very creative use for junk mail 🙂

  2. Very inspirational. 7lbs is already impressive. A quick google search and in 2008 the average American produces 4.5 pounds of waste a day with 1.1 pounds being recycled and .4 pounds, including yard waste, sent to composting. I look forward to your even lower results for next month!

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