Interview With Members From The ZWBN Community #1

Okay, so I’ve been neglecting my blog recently, and I figured the best way to get back into the swing of things, was to draw from the inspiration that’s so abundantly available in the Zero Waste Bloggers Network. I reached out to the members of the community, asked 5 questions, and the response was so overwhelming, I’ll have to make this Part 1 (of 3)

We have more than 176 members in the community already (at the time of writing, it’s growing by the day!) Some members even have Intro Posts up at the ZWBN Website.

Go have a look. You’ll also find useful hints and tips for Composting,  Zero Waste in the bathroom, or just general starter tips.

The Questions:

  1. How long have been living a Zero Waste Lifestyle?
  2. What motivated you to start?
  3. Books/documentaries etc, that you feel help the cause.
  4. What was the easiest and hardest changes you made?
  5. Any advice to help someone get started?
    • Optional, a picture of the waste accumulated over a period of time)

The Bloggers:

Kate Armstrong, From PlasticRubbish.com

Read more about Kate & Amy here.
Blogging from Yorkshire, UK
Featured Article: Plastic Free Alternatives

1. How long have been living a Zero Waste Lifestyle?
Hi there my name in Katie, and I live plastic-less which effectively means zero waste. But with one potential difference. I don’t believe we can recycle our way out of the problems cause by using plastic to make disposable packaging. So I cut plastic rather than use it and then recycle it. I have been doing this since 2006 and blogging about it since January 2007.
2. What motivated you to start?
It started with a plastic bag tangled in the tree outside my house. Too high to reach, it was still there months later. Next year, when the leaves fell, there it was! Looking ragged, tatty and even more unpleasant. It was then I realized that plastic rubbish, unlike an apple core say, doesn’t biodegrade. It seems obvious but I had never considered it before.
3. Books/documentaries etc, that you feel help the cause.
Trashed, the documentary featuring Jeremy Irons is good. http://www.trashedfilm.com/

As is the film about albatrosses living on the Midway Island. Plastic is so ubiquitous adults are feeding it to their young. The results are not good. http://www.midwayfilm.com/
4. What was the easiest and hardest changes you made?
None of it seems easy in the beginning but once you start you realize a lot of stuff you buy is actually not really necessary. Rather it is clever marketing. Soap in soap. Liquid soap or shampoo is really no different from bar soap. You are paying a whole lot more for some water, a fancy bottle and an advertising campaign. However for somethings there are no easy plastic-free alternatives. Alcohol for example. Then you have to decide how far you take this. I am prepared to live with out crisps and mars bars but will not give up alcohol. So I guess I don’t do real self deprivation.
5. Any advice to help someone get started?

Don’t try to do it all at once.

Back in 2006 I got to wondering how much plastic rubbish we created. Thats me and the husband. In fact I monitored it. I saved all our plastic rubbish for a week. By the end of 7 days I was running out of space. But studying my mighty pile of trash, I realized a complete plastic boycott that would have unpleasant results; dirty teeth, body odor and greasy hair soon followed by scurvy, rickets and ultimate starvation. So each month I eliminated a few things and sourced plastic free alternatives.. It worked for me.

Join a Zero Waste Group.

There’ll be people out there who have already sourced what you need. There is no need to re-invent the compostable, made in the U.K., reduced air miles wheel. You can see my list of plastic free alternatives here.

Photo – my original pile of trash….

plastic-survey (1)

Candice Szlaga, from Baby Steps Going Green.

Read more about Candice’s Zero Waste Journey here.
Blogging from Detroite, MI
Featured Article: Easy Swaps For The Zero Waste Beginner.

1. How long have been living a Zero Waste Lifestyle?
I’ve been living a zero-waste lifestyle for almost a year now. (The early posts)

2. What motivated you to start?
I actually started when I started my minimalist journey. I was donating tons of stuff and I started realizing how much plastic junk I had accumulated. It really opened my eyes, after that I started really “seeing” the plastic everywhere from the grocery store to my television remote.

3. Books/documentaries etc, that you feel help the cause.
Zero-waste home by Bea Johnson was what really inspired me to give things a go.

4. What was the easiest and hardest changes you made?
Easiest – Personal products like toothpaste and soaps. I make my own toothpaste and use loose bars of soap from the health store.

The hardest- grocery shopping in the winter when the farmer’s market is closed.

5. Any advice to help someone get started?
Start small, and change one or two things at a time, this isn’t a journey that magically happens overnight. It takes time to really incorporate the changes into your daily routine.

 

Gaby Gerken from Paint This City Green.

Read more about Gabe here.
Blogging from Kalamazoo, MI
Featured Article: How To Buy In Bulk

1. How long have been living a Zero Waste Lifestyle?
I’ve been working on reducing my waste since since December 2014. (The first posts)


2. What motivated you to start?
I think things started in college when I learned to cook more and eat clean. That led me to buying real food from the bulk bins and trying my hand at the no-poo hair method. Eventually I discovered Trash Is For Tossers and learned what I already was doing had a name and a movement!


3. Books/documentaries etc, that you feel help the cause.
A few documentaries I enjoy are No Impact Man and Plastic Paradise.

 

4. What was the easiest and hardest changes you made?
The easiest switch, and my personal favorite, is using a menstrual cup. I’ve had this for years and most of my friends have made the switch too. The hardest thing for me is shopping secondhand. I enjoy thrifting, but just don’t have much luck finding quality items I love.


5. Any advice to help someone get started?
Learn to shop from the bulk bins. You don’t have to buy everything there, but a few staple items is a good start.

img_20160229_113818

 

That’s all for now, folks.

Stay tuned for the next installment!

Stay Awesome

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