Understanding Zero Waste (+ 3 Easy Sustainability Tips!)

The zero waste movement has gained international attention in recent months. Created to minimize our global trash problem, the zero waste movement rethinks the flow of trash. But what does that mean, exactly? And how can you and your business live with less trash?

Understanding zero waste

By and large, the goal of zero waste living is to put an end to our dependency on landfills. According to the EPA, the average American generates 4.40 pounds of trash every single day. This sobering statistic proves just how much we’ve come to rely on landfills as far-away places to send the things we’ve done away with.

But landfills don’t exist in vacuums. We feel their negative effects even when we don’t see the trash. From water contamination to greenhouse gas emission, the garbage rotting in landfills causes serious environmental damage.

The zero waste movement seeks to solve this problem by removing trash from the equation. Instead of throwing away a plastic straw or grocery bag, a zero-waster would a) opt for a natural, reusable material instead of plastic, and b) find a way to reuse the plastic if no other material was available.

In other words, the zero waste movement is committed to a circular economy. It asks people to reduce their consumption, reuse existing materials, and—as a last resort—recycle what cannot be reused or removed from the cycle. If something cannot be reutilized in the cycle, zero-wasters remove it from the cycle as a whole.

This process may sound intense. And it’s true—completely removing waste from the equation is difficult to do, especially for business. But there are a few simple steps everyone can take to live more sustainably and get a little closer to a zero waste lifestyle.

Sustainability tip #1: Start composting

You’re familiar with the garbage and recycling bins that cover our homes and streets. But is there a better way to dispose of natural waste, like food scraps? The answer is, resoundingly, yes. With the power of composting, we can reduce landfill waste and return valuable nutrients to the soil.

Composting is easy and fun, and many cities are already hopping on board. To start, simply search for your city’s composting policy and begin saving food scraps in a bin outside. No outdoor space? Store scraps in your freezer until you have enough to send to your compost program.

Sustainability tip #2: Make smart switches

For businesses and homes, alike, there are some products you simply need to buy. But why buy new, bleached paper when you could buy recycled paper? Or toxic chemical cleaners when you could get something more eco-friendly?

Luckily, ReStockIt has an entire green section to help you make smart product switches and reduce waste. Smart switches allow you to keep the products you need in your life without causing as much harm to the environment.

Sustainability tip #3: Buy in bulk

Even with the zero waste movement picking up pace, there’s no end in sight for office necessities like paper and cleaning products. One way to reduce waste when it comes to the necessities is to buy in bulk. Bulk purchases involve less waste and often come to the tune of lower costs.

ReStockIt specializes in bulk products for the best prices, giving businesses the opportunity to reduce waste from the products they need. By incorporating this tip into your business’ sustainability plan, you’ll get uncompromised service and quality while reducing packing waste.

Want to learn more about office sustainability and planning? Check out the ReStockIt blog. And for great deals on bulk business items, visit our website.

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