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7 Simple Steps Towards A Less Waste Environment

Updated: Jun 22, 2019

by Diyana Rahim. |

Image Source: @keepcup

You’re a proud no-straw ninja and you buy your favourite boba tea with your trusty reusable bottle. Or perhaps you are starting to use more recycle bags when you go grocery shopping.

Going zero waste is no easy feat but you’re making little steps each day for Mother Nature. Well done!

Here are 7 more unconventional but easy ways (that you might not often think about) to reduce your waste.

1. Donate preloved/unused items

Do you have old clothes or books that you no longer use or need but are still in good condition? Or perhaps you bought that bag because it was super cute, but you also never had a chance to use it, and probably never will?

Instead of throwing them away, donate them! That way less trash ends up in landfills and you give those items a new lease of life with people who may need them more than you do.

2. Go Thrift Shopping

When we’re down in the dumps, we tend to go on retail therapy. We buy clothes we don’t really need because it makes us feel better at that moment.

However, buying new items is costly to the environment. This is because lots of resources are actually needed in the manufacturing of the products, such as water, crude oil and energyBuying secondhand means one less new item produced, which also means fewer resources are used and potentially wasted.

So if you need to really need to buy something, think secondhand a.k.a. thrift shopping. It’s much cheaper, too!

There are online alternatives too, like Carousell and Mudah that allows you to find something that is preloved. Most of the time, it is still in good condition, and you get to save some extra cash. Basically, killing two birds with one stone!

3. Keep your Buying Impulse at Bay

We all know that feeling of indulging in an impulsive shopping spree, and feeling all forms of regret when we check our bank account at the end of the month.

Often times, we tend to shop impulsively when we feel a need to “treat ourselves”.

Unfortunately, this behavior is not healthy for our finances, nor it is healthy for our environment.

So the next time before you indulge in a shopping spree, think carefully, do you really need to shop, or you just want to feel good?

If you are just looking for a good reward system, you could replace buying things with fun activities. It could be taking a walk at the park, reading a book, catching up on Game of Thrones (I’m still at Season 4!) or even do some baking.

If you are looking to get new stuff, you could also do some simple DIY to give your old items a brand new purpose. You could experiment with your old clothes by turning them into cute bags, pillow covers or make your own reusable cotton pads with your old cotton shirt.

This way, you get to be in touch with your creative side and feel that sense of joy and accomplishments, but without using more resources.

4. Say No to Paper Receipts

Another unconventional but super easy way to produce less waste to the environment is to say no to receipts.

“But aren’t they paper?” you may ask.

Most so-called paper receipts are actually coated with BPA, which is a type of plastic that is also used to produce water bottles. If you send them for recycling, it would actually contaminate other items.

With everything so available online, there is really not much need for paper receipts. So just tell your cashiers, to skip the receipts! Even though is a small strip of paper, don’t forget, every single small step helps.

5. Swap Bottled Soaps for Bar Soaps

Image Source: Buih Co

Using bar soaps was a common practice that our parents or grandparents did once upon a time. Or even up until we were much younger, bar soups were more often seen than now. And for good reason.

Bar soaps last longer than liquid soap as we tend to use the latter more than we actually need. Furthermore, a study found that bottled liquid soap requires five times more energy to produce and nearly 20 times more energy to package than bar soap.

While you’re swapping your soap for a more environmentally-friendly one, why not swapping your plastic toothbrush with a bamboo one as well? ;)

6. Go Meatless Once a Week

You don’t have to give up meat entirely. But try having one meal without meat at least once a week.

Raising livestock for food requires massive amounts of land, energy and water, not to mention contributing to greenhouse gas emissions. To produce 1 pound of meat, 2,400 gallons of water is required. You can save more water by not eating a pound of meat than you can by not showering for six months!

7. Don't Waste Food

This is as simple as it gets yet many of us don’t always follow through.

We may not realise it, but around 15,000 tonnes of food is wasted each year in Malaysia and 60% of this is avoidable food waste.

If you really can’t finish your food, you can always tapau or pack it in your reusable container and eat it later on.

Remember, when it comes to reducing our waste, one small step goes a long way.

Let us all make an effort each day to produce less waste to the environment! Our future generation will thank us.

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