This project is closed... but don't let that stop you! Simply execute your idea!

Maarten

So how am I going to do this?

That's what I kept wondering the past period. At first I though this idea would be challenging but doable. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized you can consider everything to be garbage.

 

With everything you use or consume, garbage has been produced in the production of the product. And most of the things you use will degrade and become unusable at some point. So isn't using these things not also producing garbage? Someones asked if bodily waste is also garbage, then isn't the air I exhale as well? This was my line of thought yesterday, which as you might understand made me feel a bit lost.


How will I survive this month?

I will take this challenge step by step because I can't be completely 'garbageless' from one day to another. The first step is to limit and hopefully stop any direct garbage I produce without increasing any indirect garbage. With direct garbage I mean all the things that I would personally put in the trash and throw away. Indirect garbage I understand as all the garbage that other people produce for me.

For instance, at this moment I want to cook with ingredients that I bought without me gathering any plastic, paper and glass. But currently I think I accept the fact that the carrot I buy, might have been packed in a box while it was traveling to the shop. 


Then step two would be to start limiting also the indirect garbage that is produced. To start buying carrots closer to the farmer, or grow my own carrots!


Right now I'm at step one. Which is fun, because today I managed to buy a lot of vegetables from a tiny little organic shop in rotterdam. I <3 An-dijvie!!



Is it garbage or not garbage, that's the question.

You know, if something you were about to throw away gets all of a sudden a different function (like a heineken bottle that becomes a brick), all of a sudden it's not garbage anymore! Some materials are better for that then others, that's why I don't think there is much wrong with producing organic waste if you create compost out of it, then a tree can grow out of it and the circle is complete.



I guess the motto from this idea is: Reduce, reuse, recycle…



Toilet paper, tissues, food, condoms?

One of the first things people ask is 'what about toilet paper'? And yeah, that's a difficult one. I'm happy to let you know I didn't use any in the last two days. But I was clean, amazing no? :-) The hangout of last Tuesday was great and it was good to discuss all these different topics. And this were the results.


  • Food -> Buy unpacked food, buy at the farmers, produce it yourself.
  • Organic waste -> make compost out of it, bring it to an animal farm
  • Toilet paper -> use less paper, add it to the compost, use a cloth and (rain)water to clean yourself. At the moment I'm actually trying to go to the toilet in the morning every day, so I can shower afterwards. It's working untill now :-)
  • Tissues -> use an old t-shirt, cotton tissues
  • Showering -> don't use showergel and shampoo. (it's also supposed to be better for the skin and hair, read more about this idea here)
  • Condoms -> no penetration :-(Thierry was so kind to note that since I won't be using showergel and shampoo, nobody would want to have sex with me anyway, that solves the problem)
  • Restaurants -> try to avoid them (this will be difficult because tomorrow I'm going on a weekend trip with the company I work for, and I don't have a camping-set or anything… Maybe this is still ok in 'step 1')
  • Toothpaste -> try to produce your own, maybe with salt, chalk, aloevera etc, call a dentist and ask for advise. At the moment I didn't get to this yet, so I'm still brushing my teeth. But hopefully soon I can find a solution for this.
  • Washing clothes -> soap nuts maybe?

 

 

Are you still reading this?? Nice!!! Did I miss anything? Do you have other ideas or solutions? Let me know in the comments. I'm happy to get more advice…

 

Love

 

m

Comments

Verena
Verena
February 2 2012  | Maarten loves thisLoveUnlove

Ik weet dat indianen hun tanden poetsen met speciaal hout, waarvan ze eerst op het uiteinde kauwen zodat het zacht wordt. En wassen kan idd met wasnoten (nooit geprobeerd) of met bijv. een ecowasbal (http://www.ecowasbal.com/) Ik heb een andere variant, maar kon die zo gauw niet vinden op t net. Werkt heel goed, behalve als je kleren echt heeeeel vies zijn. Uiteindelijk produceert t natuurlijk wel iets aan afval (na 1000 wasbeurten), maar veel minder dan de conventionele wasmiddelen :)

Verena
Verena
February 2 2012  | LoveUnlove

Oh, en beetje flauw, maar er bestaat volgens mij in theorie ook zoiets als een vrouwencondoom. Alleen van gehoord, nog nooit gezien en blijft natuurlijk discussiepunt wie het afval dan produceert ;)

Maarten
Maarten
February 3 2012  | LoveUnlove

Thanks a lot, especially for the idea of using a special ball to do the laundry. A friend of mine was using one a while ago, maybe I can ask to borrow it from him. If that works it would be great.

A female condom? I guess that's shifting the problem a little... And before you convinced someone to use it the moment is gone I guess :-)

sara
sara
February 3 2012  | Yichun loves thisLoveUnlove

i use the magnetic laundry ball. not always very pleased with the result, but hey...perhaps that is a price worth paying?
and what about lambskin condoms??? sounds slightly caveman but then again not :) even though somewhere along the line of producing them, there must be waste involved. make one yourself ! (...to quote my mother..) and then, lambskin is organic waste which can decompose!

Chantal 1
Chantal 1
February 3 2012  | LoveUnlove

Organic waste is not a problem. These are nutrients to other organisms. Just put it back in the ground after composting. Might take some time though. Fermenting is great as well; google Bokashi. Gets rid of all your organic waste and turns it into green gold.
Another idea; you might get yourself invited for dinners. Your cooks have to cook for themselves anyway and won't really have more waste by adding some more potatoes from the sack they used anyway. That wouldn't be cheating would it? Might depend on how sustainable your host is. Better check that out first.

Verena
Verena
February 3 2012  | LoveUnlove

I have ecoballs from the brand ecozone and as I said, as long as you do not have terrible stains (like chocolate, grease etc) they're really okay. I have just ordered the ones that go for 1000 instead of 150 washes, so if you like, I can send you a set to try out :) I like the idea about inviting yourself for dinner! If you happen to be in Arnhem, feel free ;) And I don't think it really matters if your host is not very sustainable YET, they probably will be a lot more sustainable after talking to you ;)!
@ Sara: does there really exist such a thing as lambskin condoms??? Personally I wouldn't ever trust a selfmade condom to work, maybe you should ask your mother how she got pregnant with you ;)?

Maarten
Maarten
February 4 2012  | LoveUnlove

@ chantal, Bokashi seems very interesting, I will check it out more. Thanks!!
I like having dinners with friends a lot, it will probably create a bit more indirect waste, so maybe its even better to invite friends over to have dinner with me! eventhough my cooking is limited at the moment since I don't have salt and other tastemakers yet. Hopefully I will at some point this month. Maybe I can make salt from my own sweat.. (just kidding :-)

@verena, thanks for the invite and offering to send the ecoballs. I might be able to borrow one from a friend, which would save packaging etc...

@sara, maybe I will just become a monk, at least for a month :-)

Verena
Verena
February 5 2012  | LoveUnlove

You could use ingredients high on salt, like cheese and (salted) nuts, which you could buy on the market. Maybe you could even buy sea-salt somewhere on the market?

Joan
Joan
February 5 2012  | Verena loves thisLoveUnlove

Why not buy soaps etc made entirely from natural products? Then you don't produce any harmful waste, I'd say. Of course you first have to find a shop where they sell this unpackaged..

Simon
Simon
February 7 2012  | LoveUnlove

About the toilet paper, a friend of mine had this book:
http://www.amazon.com/How-Shit-Woods-Second-Environmentally/dp/0898156270

You can just wipe your bottoms with leaves or grass! (didn't test...)

Maarten
Maarten
February 7 2012  | LoveUnlove

@Joan, yes at least for washing my hands. Showering without showergel and shampoo I'm also doing because I'm interested what the effects will be on my skin, hair, smell, etc...

@Simon, Thanks! Until now I'm managing with good timing, but if I would go camping that will be handy...

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