Rubbish-free year

A Christchurch couple attempt to go a full year without creating any rubbish

Rubbish-free year - Week 52

Add a comment

Well, as I write this there are two days of our challenge year left and a party still to have, so next week's blog will be the last official rubbish-free year blog, and will have the final update of the rubbish we collected during the year. But we will keep blogging, if for nothing else than to keep us honest.

The way this year has gone was quite unexpected - the way the media have been so interested and how widely people have followed our exploits. It amazes me, who would have thought RUBBISH would have such general appeal?

I've thought of an analogy that I think explains what's going on for many of us. Imagine if you had never seen lollies before, and then one day your friend says, hey check out this new amazing thing I've found. You look at this brightly coloured fantastic looking thing and you love it already. Taste it, encourages your friend. What then happens in your mouth has no precedent. Better than broccoli for sure.

For weeks your friend supplies you with lollies and you marvel at the rich energy source, the taste and the colour - but most of all you can't believe the price - cheaper than broccoli, too.

Time passes, lollies spread and soon a generation arrives who need lollies for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

It is about this time, when you and many others get a niggling feeling that your bodies aren't running as well as they used to, but you're not sure what to do about it.

Avoiding lollies seems time consuming and expensive, even backwards. Then you hear of a young couple who have challenged themselves to live for a year without lollies, and you watch them with interest.

And so it is. We leaped at plastic. It was durable, cheap and convenient. Mum said when manufacturers starting using plastic icecream containers and meat trays people couldn't believe they were getting such good-quality containers for free.

Kindys, gardeners and handymen seemed to need an endless supply of them.

Parents who already had their hands full appreciated shopping bags with handles and jars that didn't break when dropped.

And now, as it's slowly dawning on us that something's not quite right, we find ourselves unable to stop throwing away kilos of plastic every week. It's not that we want to, its just we aren't sure how to change.

I think this has really been what our year has been about, about our own experiment to live differently, and by way of the media and this blog we have journeyed with so many of you all. And its been great!

Our last rubbish-free week has been busy with making ice. Because we can't buy party ice for our party (because of the plastic bag) I have been making our own.

I borrowed some ice trays, emptied all the ice cubes into large containers in the freezer and refilled the trays with water.

I also have a friend doing the same thing, so we should have heaps. We have also solved the serviette problem, I couldn't think how to avoid the plastic they come in until a friend suggested dipping-bowls.

So guests with dirty little fingers will dip them in the bowls and dry them on hand towels. I like this idea - so simple, I'll report next week how it went.

Have your say

We aim to have healthy debate. But we won't publish comments that abuse others. View commenting guidelines.

1200 characters left

© Copyright 2014, APN New Zealand Limited

Assembled by: (static) on red akl_n4 at 21 Oct 2014 11:19:34 Processing Time: 381ms