Eco gift wrapping

Congratulations, you started your life without rubbish! Well, or planning to start. In any case, if you have read this sentence, then this topic probably interests you.

But at the very beginning of the journey, there are many difficulties awaiting you that need to be overcome. To make it easier to cope with them, I decided to make a list of those mistakes that are most often made by people who have just started their path as a zirowister. I myself made these mistakes.

Error Take all plastic for recycling

So, you woke up in the morning and firmly decided that it was time to tie up with the cursed plastic. We collected all the plastic at home, threw it off to the nearest collection point and mentally praised ourselves. You did a good job, didn't you?

No, no. To begin with, not all plastic is recycled. First, you need to pay attention to the marking: if there is a number 3 or 7 in the triangle, then such plastic will not be recycled. It is also highly likely that plastic will not be accepted for recycling if it is dirty.

Also, don't throw away the plastic you regularly use. For example, food containers, plastic mugs, your favorite sachet bag. More on this in the next paragraph:

Error Buy new items

It is because of such beautiful photographs with "necessary" goods that people begin to believe that zero waste is expensive. I'll give you a secret, but zero waste is free. Especially at the very beginning, you can (and should) use all those things that are left from the previous lifestyle. For example, go to the store not with a stylish shopping bag, but with bags left over from past purchases until they break. There can be many such examples, and they deserve a separate article, which I will write someday.

When one day the packages run out or you decide that you are ready to spend money on something longer term, you can start buying goods. But first, it's better to look at eco-friendly products on any sites like Avito, because buying from hands is much better and cheaper.

Do not forget that zero waste is still an industry. And in this regard, the following point:

Error Buying green products in non-green places

They want to make money on ecology, this is a fact, and it is pointless to argue with this. Therefore, far from the most environmentally friendly companies, they also want to jump on the ecology train and start selling goods to ziweisters. At first glance, this is good, but.

But have you ever wondered who makes them? In what conditions do they work? And what quality will the goods be?

All summer residents and owners of personal plots try, to the best of their material and physical strength, to make their site comfortable.

One of the main holidays of the year is approaching - New Year. Many traditions are associated with it, but most of them, unfortunately, are very harmful to our nature. If you cannot completely abandon them, this does not mean that you cannot change them. So how do you make your holiday a little more environmentally friendly?

An elegant Christmas tree in every home has long become a stable tradition, killing over a million conifers in Russia. If we consider that this happens in less than a month, the picture becomes even worse.

The artificial tree was introduced to the market as an alternative to the real one, however, it can hardly be considered more environmentally friendly. It takes a lot more resources to make such a tree, and it is made of non-recyclable plastic. However, if you already have an artificial tree, then you shouldn't give up on it. It will be much better if you put it on every year instead of buying a new one.

For sustainable alternatives:

If you are lucky enough to live in a private house and have your own plot of land, you can grow a spruce (or another coniferous plant of your choice) on it and decorate a truly living plant every year, which may not last only to you, but also to your grandchildren.

If you live in an apartment, you can use other options. You can dress up one of your houseplants: cactus, dracaena, monster, and so on. You can also make an alternative Christmas tree from scrap materials: books, boxes, threads, paper, branches and other materials.

Christmas decorations

Here again, the same rule applies: use the toys you already have. If you want new toys, make them yourself from scrap materials. And if you still need to buy new toys, then give preference not plastic, but glass and wood, which will last you much longer.

Gifts

“Well, what a New Year without gifts,” many will think. The culture of consumption imposed on us the idea that for every holiday it is necessary to buy and give a lot of gifts. It is not so easy to refuse it, it is really pleasant to give and receive gifts. But this must be done deliberately so that hundreds of tons of gifts do not end up in a landfill.

On New Years, as well as on other holidays, we are used to packing gifts. Sadly, most of the packaging is only used once and then just thrown away. Wrapping paper is generally not recyclable, and so are many gift bags. Of course, the most environmentally friendly packaging is its absence, but today we are not going to talk about that.

What should those who want to pack their gifts beautifully do without harming nature too much? Let's start with the simplest :)

- Reuse gift bags and boxes

Let's already admit that we all donate gift boxes and packages, and there is nothing terrible or indecent in this. Sometimes I even wonder if a person recognizes the packaging in which he gave me a gift for the last holiday. The best friend finds out, has already got used to it, and every time I joke “open it carefully, I will pack you a gift in it for the next holiday”.

- Use unnecessary boxes

For example, I often order goods from Ozone, and almost all goods from there come in boxes of different sizes. I specially take them for myself every time, and then they go for gifts.

If you don't have boxes at home, you can just go to any store or cafe and ask if they have any unnecessary boxes. As a child, I often did this, and I was always given a couple of boxes for free without any problems.

So, first you need to get rid of the unnecessary tape on the box. After that, I close the bottom like this:

Then the box can be decorated in any way you can imagine. You can paint it, draw something or paste it over.

- Use old newspapers, calendars, catalogs and magazines, wrapping paper

Again, I still have ordinary wrapping paper from purchases from Ozone (they do not regret it there), newspapers are thrown into the mailbox for free and handed out on the streets, and I also often find catalogs and magazines in my mail ...

Firstly, all of this can be used for pasting boxes. You can glue the boxes completely, you can use some fragments, you can make a collage.

The New Year is approaching, and most people start thinking about what kind of tree to put up for them: “live” or artificial. Moreover, the debate about which of these trees is less harmful to nature has not subsided somewhere since November.

Let's see who is right in this dispute.

Greenpeace, in its article on this topic, actively defends the opinion that live spruce is still more environmentally friendly: “Spruce can be specially grown for the New Year on plantations or cut down where ordinary forest does not grow, for example, under the power lines ”. Moreover, such trees are sold at special Christmas tree bazaars, where the sellers have the relevant documents. But let's be honest: when was the last time you asked the seller for the documents for the procurement and transported the food (and where will he send you if you ask them)?

Yes, unfortunately, the overwhelming majority of Christmas trees sold here are obtained illegally. They are cut down and brought by poachers, well, or ordinary workers who were told to "cut", and they cut them without asking unnecessary questions. It is also possible that the sellers themselves do not know how legally the Christmas trees were cut down.

Well, after the holiday, the tree must be put somewhere. If you just send it to a landfill, it, like other organic waste, will emit methane. Fortunately, recently there have been more and more opportunities to hand over spruce for processing: it is accepted, for example, for making bedding or animal feed.

As for the artificial tree, much more resources are spent on its production and transportation. It is made of metal and plastic, and often their production can be toxic. Well, they are not accepted for processing.

Thus, of these two options, it will be more environmentally friendly to buy a “legal” Christmas tree with its subsequent delivery for processing.

But there are other options.

) Don't put up the tree at all

You can create a New Year mood and decorate your apartment without a tree. Here are some examples:

If you want a spruce smell and atmosphere in your apartment, you can take spruce branches, put or hang them at home. From them you can assemble a wreath or a composition.

) Don't buy a new artificial tree

The keyword is “new”. If you already have an artificial Christmas tree, it is best to use it while you can. According to the same Greenpeace, an artificial tree pays off its ecological footprint only if it has been used for 20 years.