7 Tips To Reduce Waste At Home Everyday!

  • Shruti Sunderra
  • 186

Considering the amount of waste generated by everyday use, it is a miracle that our environment has not yet collapsed under the sheer weight of all the wastage and debris. If, like us, this concerns you, then your way forward is very clear. While you don’t have to join an environmental organization to make a difference (although that would be quite noble too), you can make a difference in your very own household by ensuring your contribution to wastage is minimized! Here are a few easy everyday tips to nail this! From re-using to re-cycling and organizing the waste in a certain manner, you can really revamp your house and even the environment around. 

1. RE-USE!

Everything from bags to containers can be re-used and this is exactly what we should be already doing!  Opt for cloth/jute bags instead of plastic ones for buying groceries. Bring your own bag to the grocery store so you don't have to use plastics bags. Buy your monthly supplies in bulk and put them in containers. A lot of plastic goes to waste if you keep buying supplies throughout the month. For example, buy 5 kilos of wheat for the month instead of 1 kg every week. Same applies for liquids.  Buy large 1 litre tetra packs of soy milk instead of small 150 ml ones. This easy one step change will create a domino effect which will work out well for you and the environment!

2. Upcycle

Now, this is concept that is both environmentally-friendly and creatively fun too! Repaint old alcohol bottles or jam/mason jars and use them as lamps or as pencil holders. Use old clothes as wiping cloths, Convert large plastic bags into shower curtains! There are a million DIY ideas on the internet! You could also use little bottle caps as tea lights and your mom’s old sarees as bedsheets. These little projects will created by your hands will increase the aesthetic appeal of your surroundings! There are so many different ways! You could upcycle the things you would normally throw away and convert them into something useful and cool. Apply the “best out of waste” strategy!

3. Separate Dry And Wet Waste!

Yes, this might sound tedious, but if you look at it - what we’re doing to the environment is far more tedious. The simplest thing to do is to maintain two dustbins in the house (marked red and green for wet and dry waste respectively) and encourage everyone to follow your lead. The separate disposal of this garbage might come across as a problem especially if you live in India, where waste disposal is not segregated. This is currently creating one huge snowball of environmental hazards. The BMC (Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation) has started organizing separate waste disposals in every locality. Use this facility to dump your waste separately. If not, pay an extra buck to your local garbage collectors to dump your garbage separately.

4. Opt For Reusable Sanitary Napkins And Cloth Diapers!

Well, grandma was right!  Switch to cloth diapers as the sheer number of times a baby poops is directly proportionate to the amount of diapers thrown into the waste bin and this is also more baby-friendly in terms of health. Use reusable sanitary napkins - This might sound revolutionary and even absurd, but it’s anything but that. Indian women in the past only used cloth instead of sanitary napkins. But in this present time, it’s not really possible to wear just cloth anymore given our lifestyle. Which is why, many companies, especially in India, have started launching cloth sanitary napkins that are not only efficient in curbing flow but are also hygienic and easily reusable. There are even companies in the international markets that manufacture menstrual cup and period underwear – i.e. underwear that you can wear during your periods without a napkin! Can you imagine the joy? Well, it is joyful to the environment as well.

5. Use Newspapers As Toilet Papers

Every year, a staggering amount of human waste leads to and even more astounding amount of wastage of paper that is used to wipe off human waste. This thought surely makes us cringe! The absolute number of trees being used to just make paper to wipe our waste is baffling!  A simple way of curbing this is to use the newspaper you buy everyday as toilet paper. It’s simple and effective. You could also substitute newspapers in place of  tissues or best, use a cloth towel!  It would even be better if you go the water sprinkler way as it is safest for the environment!

6. Save Water In Every Way Possible!

Use manual or semi-automatic washing machines to do your laundry. Automatic machines consume twice the amount of water manual machines do.  Even better, use public laundry machines. Hand-wash the dishes, rather than using the dishwasher – saves more water and Semi-dry mop your floor, anyway extreme wet mopping not only wastes water but can also damage your flooring. Re-use the soap water you’ve used for your laundry to mop the floor and also opt for home-boiled water over packaged water containers. 

7. Decorate Your Balconies With Pot Plants!

Pot plants like aloe vera or rose flower plants require very less attention as compared to gardened plants. If you have the time and space for gardening, get going! For those who don’t have that luxury, especially in a space-deprived city, pot plants are your best friends. Having plants around not only adds decorative value to your home, but also keeps the air cooler and the environment in your home cleaner.

These are the few ways which will help you lead a sustainable life and give the landfills a little less to hold. So use what is reusable, reduce wherever possible and be efficient with your consumables!


Shruti Sunderraman

When she's not trying to satiate her itchy feet by boarding buses to unknown destinations with a sleeping bag in tow, she tries to keep up with and explore cultural and political developments across the globe, perform spoken word, write poetry and music.

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