Day 5 was not a good day for tracking my waste. I had a very full day and kept finding that I had tossed something away without remembering to take a picture. There was the ramen package from, numerous tissues, several tea bags, and at least one set of coffee grounds. Last night I also had a gig at a local club and I forgot to photograph the leftover lime after having my post show drink. So, while my computer showed about 10 images, one of which was too blurry to be usable, I know I generated far more waste than that.
Based on prior days I’m estimating that I am responsible for about 25 pieces of waste per day. About six or seven of those pieces are probably toilet paper! With only two days left of tracking my waste my thoughts are beginning to turn to what to do after this week is over. How will I use this information?
The first thing that comes to mind is of course to reduce the waste that I produce. While most of my waste is recycled, composted, or reused, there is one culprit that remains, and that is plastic – most of which comes in the form of non-recyclable packaging like the bags the cat food comes in, the ramen package, and the bags certain vegetables come in. I am sure that some of these can be eliminated by making different choices.
The second thing I’d like to do is to find ways to help others reduce the amount of waste they produce. After reading a recent report on food waste, I’ve decided to create workshop designed to help people reduce the amount of food they toss away. The first part of this will be to survey people I know about why they throw food away – is it all restaurant left overs? Is it that they buy more than they need, and it goes bad? Do they buy food with the intention of cooking it but never get around to it?
Today I’m leaving for a weekend dance retreat. I will still be tracking my waste and writing about it. It will be interesting to see if there is any difference in the amount of waste I produce when I am on the road.
If you 'd like to leave a comment I'd love to know how this series has started you thinking about the waste you produce, if it has at all, and what you think you might do to reduce it.