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Achieving a zero-waste society would be a dream come true. However, in reality, it may be impossible to achieve, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try. Here at LondonEnergy, we are doing everything possible to recycle or reuse as much of North London’s waste as possible.
Zero Waste Week takes place from the 5th to the 9th of September 2022. It is an award-winning campaign raising awareness about the environmental impact of the waste we produce as a society.
We have become so used to a throw-away mentality; we give little thought to what happens to our waste. It doesn’t magically disappear into the ether; instead, it ends up in landfill, oceans, or other environmental locations, causing danger to our wildlife.
The concept of Zero Waste Week was devised to raise awareness of what’s happening in our world, recognising the need for action, such as:
By encouraging people to reduce their use of synthetic materials and plastic packaging and use alternative forms of transport, the campaign wants to increase the growing trend of sustainability.
What do you do with your food scraps and daily waste?
Do you compost, separate your recyclables, and reuse as much as possible religiously? Or do you think, now and then, that you can’t be bothered and throwing one thing away won’t make a difference?
The problem is that ‘one thing’ mounts up and becomes many things over time, and that’s what we, as a society, must get away from.
A statistic we refer to a lot is that every year 2 million tonnes of waste is created in London. That’s a crazy amount. It doesn’t take a lot of effort to curb our wasteful habits; it just takes a bit of thought.
Here are a few basic ideas that you can adopt.
The results of the Big Plastic Count revealed that every household is throwing away an average of 66 single-use plastic items a week. Instead of buying a bottle of water every time you’re out and about, start using a reusable water bottle. Not only will this reduce waste, but it will save you money too. The same goes for taking your own reusable cup.
A bag for life will help reduce waste. All you have to do is remember to take it with you. Of course, they’re not just for your weekly food shop; taking a bag with you every time you head to the shops will have a significant impact on the amount of waste plastic bags that fill our landfill every day.
Buying products that come with less packaging or recyclable packaging goes a long way toward reducing your daily waste.
Did you know all your fruit and vegetable scraps, egg shells, coffee grounds, grass clippings, and leaves can be composted? Yes, it takes a bit of work, but it means you’ll save on buying fertilisers and plant food as well as help the environment.
Do you really need a new dress, pair of shoes, jumper, or shirt? Before you dash out to buy something new for your wardrobe, consider buying something pre-loved. Websites like Vinted, eBay and Thrift offer lots of fantastic clothing items for sale at a fraction of the price of new, plus you’re doing your bit to reduce waste.
In the same way, when you’ve finished with something, think about whether it can be upcycled or reused. Donating it to charity shops or second time around outlets will allow others the chance to use it too rather than sending it to the tip. We’ll come back to this in a moment
It’s easier than ever to go paperless. Online bills, e-receipts, and online magazine and newspaper subscriptions help reduce
Let’s go back to those second time around shops.
If you live in North London, did you know that LondonEnergy has its own Second Time Around shop at its Kings Road site in Chingford?
Often referred to as ‘Chingford’s hidden gem’ and ‘the shop you don’t want to tell your friends about’, it’s an Aladdin’s cave of full of gems donated to all LondonEnergy sites. But it’s much more than a shop. The team provide encouragement and advice on how you can make the most of the bargains they sell. Plus, should you have an item that can’t be recycled or re-sold (such as duvets and mattresses), they’ll point you in the direction of a facility that can.
It's a real community hub that wastes nothing. All carrier bags have been donated by the public and there’s even an upcycle corner where many items are free to a good home. What’s more, if you’re looking for something specific, the team will keep their eyes peeled and call you when it’s in.
It’s one example of how a simple idea can be turned into a thriving community, encouraging everyone to recycle more because second hand doesn’t mean second best.
No one person or organisation will solve the waste problem, but if we all pull together and do our bit, we can achieve great things.
All it takes is a bit of thought. It’s time to think carefully about your daily habits and make as many changes as possible so you, too, can help Zero Waste Week grow and succeed in its zero-waste aim.
LondonEnergy’s waste management system is helping the residents and businesses of North London adopt a less wasteful lifestyle to build a sustainable future.