February 16, 2015

Zero Waste Lent:The Start of a Long Journey

Inspiration: Mama Bea Johnson of zerowastehome.com
Every year for Lent I try to do something meaningful. Something that will improve my relationship with God, my life, the lives of those around me. This has manifested itself in very different ways throughout the years--wearing a prayer covering, giving up abbreviated words, or journaling everyday. These different practices help me critically analyze my life and help me take a step back from the "ordinary time." I don't necessarily stick with the practice that I try for Lent. I still abbreviate words (sometimes). I haven't chosen to continue wearing a prayer covering. Journaling is still very important to me and is part of my New Years Resolution--journaling every day for a year! However, I want this year to be different.

For Lent, I am starting a Zero Waste journey. That's right, I am journeying towards a life of drastically lowering the amount of waste that I create to...zero.

Is that even possible? 
Well, probably not. It's definitely not going to happen in 46 days and even after that it will take me a long time to use up the plastic products that I already have in my home. I am committed to using up all of the products that I have before having to send them "away."

How are you going to do it? 
Over the next six and half weeks, I am going to be tracking my waste. First, I want to know about how much waste I create from day to day. What are the little bits of waste that I create without thinking about them? I am hoping to become even more aware of my consumption of "one time use" items that have a more sustainable alternative. Second, I am going to be focusing on a different area of my life for each week of Lent. I will be focusing on Grocery Shopping & Kitchen, Wardrobe & Bedroom, Hygiene & Bathroom, School work & Desk, Time & Social Media, and Spirituality. Third, it's a long journey and I'm just getting started. It will take me a long time to transition from the plastics and disposable products that I have now to Zero Waste alternatives. It might take a couple years, but I am humbly and intentionally starting the transition now.

Why are you doing this? 
I am doing this because I believe that a Zero Waste (or little waste) life is possible. I have been so inspired by Bea Johnson of Zero Waste Home and Lauren Singer of Trash is for Tossers. Bea and Lauren each live in highly populated cities in California and New York. I live in a medium size town in Indiana. I want to become more aware of the resources available around me. How far do I have to travel to find a co-op? What about the farmers markets? I'm also in seminary and my time is limited--how can I make a Zero Waste lifestyle work for me?
Inspiration: 20 something Lauren Singer of trashisfortossers.com
My faith is a huge piece of why I am doing this, hence starting intentionally for Lent. My faith journey has led me to take small steps to reduce my impact on the planet: vegetarian diet, using reusable grocery bags, etc. Transforming to a Zero Waste lifestyle is another step on a long journey to living in better harmony with the Earth, which as a Christian, is what God calls me to. I know that I can do more to limit my impact on the planet and I want to pursue that radically and intentionally.

I will be blogging about my experiences and what I learn along the way. I am humbly embarking on this journey knowing that I am not going to get there in 46 days, but it's my hope that I will learn so much and be 46 days closer to a Zero Waste Life.

1 comment:

  1. That's so awesome and inspiring! I never knew a lifestyle like that existed. I wold like to try that myself, eventually.