Zero waste: Start lean, end clean and green

Zero wasters avoid plastics and make things that most of us buy packaged

Ms Tippi Thole recycled. She composted. She thought she was doing a pretty good job environmentally. Then she heard a talk on plastics, and the container of trash she and her eight-year-old son emptied out every week began to look irresponsible.

She replaced her 38-litre can with a small wastebasket that had been under her bathroom sink and started to change the way she shopped and lived. Within 14 weeks, the family's weekly trash fit into a 6cm-tall Mason jar - with room to spare. These days, a week's worth of trash might contain a receipt or two, fruit stickers, a wine bottle cap, a bottle label, a Band-Aid and packing tape.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 12, 2018, with the headline 'Zero waste: Start lean, end clean and green'. Print Edition | Subscribe