So here we are! Waste Free Week is over, and I can honestly say that I'll never look at waste the same way. As I was flitting between different houses all week it's quite hard for me to provide an accurate figure for how much waste I produced. However, I reckon I was responsible for around 1kg of rubbish. That sounds a lot, but that does include the infamous pasta-kebab disaster.
On Friday evening I needed some comfort food after getting up at 4am to conduct the Breckland Council waste audit, so a lot of waste-saving strategies like taking plastic boxes to the shops went out the window. I settled on a steak and ale pie, which noentheless came in reassuringly reusable cardboard and foil. I also went for a few loose veg and a lovely bit of mustard mash. Very little waste there, and I wasn't even trying! I think that's the key thing that I will take out of this week - being able to produce very minimal waste without it being a major effort. They say practice makes perfect, and sure enough waste reducing behaviour can quite quickly become habit. To be green, you really don't need to hug a tree every morning and forage for your dinner in the local woodland. Just making few careful decisions in the shops can be a huge step towards a more sustainable lifestyle.
We are all consumers, and it is environmentally aware consumption behaviour that can have dramatic impacts on waste and carbon footprints, as well as narrowing the gap between producer and consumer.
This week has been a great experience and I hope everyone else has enjoyed the challenge as much as I have. My next step is going to be to investigate local organic food networks as alternatives to jet-setting supermarket veg, and hopefully my bin will continue to be nice and slender.