10 Steps to a Zero-Waste Household


“The benefits of a zero-waste lifestyle go well beyond the obvious environmental impact.”

-Yes Magazine

Curious yet? Let’s explore the well-beyond with some help from YesMagazine.org!

“Refuse”
Everyone hates it. Everyone gets it. Junk mail.

Just say no! There are a number of third-party sources you can register with at any time to receive less mail: dmachoice.org, optoutprescreen.org, catalogchoice.org.

And say no to giveaways at concerts or conferences. Instead of giving a false address to vendors, just say you are not interested. That way you save time and resources.

“Reduce”
It’s right about that time for spring cleaning! Go through your attic and your storage and take inventory of the items you will keep, and the ones you will not. Once you’ve decided on what to get rid of, consider different avenues of purging your junk—because it might be someone else’s’ treasure.

Think about a thrift store or outlet that accepts secondhand items.

“Reuse”

Swapping everyday disposable items for reusable or washable materials is an easy way to cut back on household waste and save some extra green. For example, when you go grocery shopping, bring along a canvas bag or recycled tote to carry your purchases instead of resorting to plastic. Use a handkerchief instead of buying box after box of tissues. Consider using a cloth diaper—even if every other day. You’ll be surprised what you save!

“Recycle”
It’s important to know the ins-and-outs of what your city or township offers in terms of trash and recycling services. Before restoring to a landfill, first exhaust your resources for finding a secondhand shop or another person to take an item off your hands.

When purchasing new products, try to buy in bulk to cut down on the amount of packaging used. And whenever you can, avoid plastic. Most of the time America’s plastics are shipped aboard for recycling—and most of the time it ends up in a landfill or in the ocean.

“Rot”
Consider buying another trash bin to use for composting. Excess food, produce, dryer lint, grass clippings, wood chips, shredded newspaper, and more. See a full list by clicking here.