Steps to Being a Zero Waste Consumer

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In the past 50 years, humans have consumed more resources than in all previous history. The first step to reducing is letting go of the consumption mentality and consuming less!  Before you take or buy, think critically with these questions to determine whether you really need that thing or could you repurpose something you already have. 

  1. Can I go without it?
  2. Can I borrow it?
  3. Can I get it used?

Buying less means decreasing demand for creating new products so less will end up in the landfill and eliminates the upstream impacts. Borrowing and buying used is not just clothes or book - you can also find  furniture, sporting or home goods and more! You can check out brick and mortar secondhand thrift stores or online from handy sites such as Nextdoor, OfferUp, Facebook Marketplace, & ThredUp.  

If you do find you need to buy something new, try asking these questions to help guide you.

  1. Can I get a reusable version? 
  2. Can I get it with less packaging?

There are many types of reusable items - from water bottles, to bags, to soap dispensers. When buying new, seek out products that will last as long as possible, ideally made with the lowest impact or from recycled materials. 

If you’re interested in learning more about closing your waste loop, check out our new resource guide with more tips on being a zero-waste consumer. (Pro tip: download this and hang it on your fridge or share with a friend!) If you want to dive deeper, tune on on Nov 4th for a webinar discussing zero waste and simple shifts to make to reduce, reuse and recycle.  Register in advance for this free virtual event to hold you spot!