Many faculty members and students of the Faculty of Social Sciences are interested in environmental issues and the well-being of our planet. For instance, Anthropology Masters student Marie Lecuyer is doing her research on the effects of plastic on our environment. Her research in an invitation to reflect on our own actions and find ways to reduce our ecological footprint.
Beyond composting and recycling, have you heard about the zero waste movement? It is when we take conscious steps to reduce our waste to hopefully zero by not sending any trash to landfills. Regardless of who you are, what you care about, what you do, who you’re voting for, we can all do things in our daily lives that impact the environment in a positive way. And in return, impact our wallets and health in a positive way! Here are a few tips to get you started:
- say no to plastic straws
- donate what you really don’t use to a local charity
- pack your own lunch - don’t forget to bring your fork,
- swap out a plastic toothbrush for a bamboo one
- learn how to make your own products (tooth paste!)
- shop at second hand stores (it’s also 90% cheaper)
- buy in bulk (with your mason jars)
- shop at the farmers market (and avoid paying for packaging)
- use a reusable bag
- look in your trashcan and learn to compost
- maybe you don’t need 50 beauty products, but only about 4
And remember, there’s no one good place to start. Just start! Do something that’s easy and approachable, and that will give you the confidence to try something else. You don’t have to do it all at once, it’s impossible to go zero waste in a day, it’s one thing at a time! Realize that every positive change will have a positive impact.
Lastly, be consistent and think about the kind of world you want to live in and if the life you’re living is aligned with that or not. Learn more about green initiatives put in place by uOttawa, visit the Office of Campus Sustainability website.