The European Week for Waste Reduction (EWWR) was held from 21 to 29 November and this year its goal was to raise awareness around “invisible” waste, which is produced during the manufacturing process. This invisible waste is produced when the materials are first extracted, the refining of these raw materials and then transporting the end product to the market or point of sale.
At the “Getting organic waste right” campaign, we want to remind you that in addition to correctly separating any waste generated in the home – packages, organic material, glass, paper – it is particularly important to reduce the amount of waste itself. Every person in Madrid generates around 1 kg of rubbish every day and although nearly half of it is organic – which we’re sure you now place in the brown bin – there are other types of waste that can be recycled, reused or even better, avoided entirely.
The environmental impact of a landfill with tons of rubbish is huge. So, we are asking you to reflect on how you shop and how you get rid of waste at home. You can reduce the amount of waste you produce each day just by putting these simple consumer habits into practice:
Take a minute before you start buying. Think hard before taking something home which you are really not going to use. Consume only what you need. And if you make a shopping list you won’t buy unnecessary things or any which will go to waste if you do not use them.
Avoid disposable products. Reduce your use of cups, knives and forks made of disposable plastic or other types of single-use plastic.
Reuse any plastic bags or carry a cloth bag when shopping to avoid piles of new bags.
Buy in bulk so you don’t buy more packaging than food. And if you buy concentrated products which come in smaller presentations, they will be easier to carry and you’ll produce less waste.
Reduce your consumption of paper. Many companies already offer to send digital versions of bills and many supermarkets and shops post their advertising leaflets online.
Keep any empty food containers. Instead of buying new containers, you can reuse old containers for keeping food (like Tupperware) or for storing small items.
In addition to reducing waste, you can also reuse it: what looks like waste can be anything you want it to be … Put your imagination to work! Now that the time for exchanging presents is approaching, you can lend your gifts a creative touch by using any newspapers, catalogues or calendars you have around the house to wrap or package your gifts with them. You can also choose to give services or leisure activities as gifts instead of physical objects.
And if you have tips of your own for reusing or reducing waste at home, we’d love you to share them with us by writing to our Twitter profile.
Preventing waste is simple if we all help!