Some years ago I weighed our rubbish each week for a period of time. The quantity was small but I cannot even remember the approximate weights.
I have decided to make a start on this again and redouble our efforts to reduce our small amount of waste that goes to landfill even further.
This is the contents of our kitchen bin for approximately 2 weeks.
Not all of it is identifiable but there are 2 cheese wrappers, packaging from a parcel we received, an old sponge (left by housesitters 6 months ago), a mouldy ziplock bag which was beyond being salvaged, a small mayonnaise bottle and a butter wrapper (Aldi have changed to foil wrappers – not happy so I will be voting with my feet and buying butter elsewhere in future). The rest is mostly plastic packaging of one sort and another – mostly one off items from Christmas gifts/catering. The silver star looks like something from a child’s toy which has been left here – so not strictly our waste but it does have to be discarded.
Here it is – all packaged up. I put most of the small bits compacted into the ziplock bag. I always try to contain any small, lightweight rubbish as the last thing I want is for it to drift out of the collection truck or the landfill site and end up in a watercourse.
The next step was to put it all in the parcel post bag and weigh it.
152g or 5 and 3/8 ounces for my non-metric friends.
Once I had done this I put the rubbish in the bin, except for the post bag which I have saved for next week’s rubbish.
From now on I will weigh and post about the rubbish each Friday so that we have a weekly total for comparison. It will vary from week to week as some things are only discarded rarely but my hope is that we will continue to generate very little waste.
Plastic is definitely the major culprit when it comes to items going to landfill. The challenge is to look for feasible alternatives and investigate any recycling options for those items which I do not currently recycle.
Do you generate much waste? Are you looking for ways to reduce your use of single-use plastic items? I would love to hear your stories so that we can encourage each other.
yes, plastic is the hardest to not buy isn’t it? my bin goes out about every 3-4 months, looking at your little rubbish i dare say yours is longer than that? i don’t like the smell it starts to get, it’s not full when i put it out.
it’s so hard not to get things in plastic, i buy my herbs & spices from Mudbrick Cottage & they are a little heavy on the packaging but their items don’t cost as much as other sites (who also do the heavy packaging) companies seem to be making more plastic storage solutions than looking back to alternatives like tin. i’m always looking in 2nd hand shops
most of it is the health & safety lot as to why there is so much & very few have alternatives.
it’s very good thought provoking post & will have to think where i can reduce a little more
thanx for sharing