Be The Change!

We try not to take stuff to the tip- by following the 3 R’s- Reduce, Re-Use, Recycle we are mostly able to avoid this. Freecycle is your friend people! We recently dismantled a UPVC conservatory that was on the back of our house. It took a while, but after offering it on Freecycle a few times- someone wanted it and was prepared to come and dismantle it, in order to take it away. We assisted them as much as possible and saved ourselves £2,000 in labour and disposal costs. I ended up taking only the cement from between the bricks to the tip who charged me £1.50 per bag (x6 bags), so £9 to dispose of it. Whilst I was there, a kind operative helped me to lift the heavy bags and tip them into the skip. So I got chatting to him about what happens to all the household waste that ended up here.

I was shocked to learn that nothing was re-purposed and even the operatives who worked there are not allowed to remove items that could be re-used. After having lived in an area previously where all re-usable items were pulled out for re-sale at the tip (usually for only £1 or £2) & re-use, I was shocked! The operative admitted his shock at some of the items people throw away- like really decent hi-fi systems and sofas. It also made me think how lazy many human beings are- not even bothering to think if someone else might need this item, or taking it to a charity shop etc.

So great was my level of concern that I decided to contact the Head of the Environmental Services Department at my local council and express my horror at what was being sent to landfill. I will let you click on the link below and discover what is now happening in my area- I am SO excited!

I will make a new post after I have attended the launch event in a couple of weeks time!

Could Minimalism change the world?

I really think it could/ can! It’s not like it’s a new concept. It’s that we all need to learn something that we once knew. We need to recognise that we’re being seduced by consumerism for a start. If you’re reading this, then I reckon you’re probably there already!

Imagine this….if we consume less….we waste less. Let’s take a few examples here- this means that some poor person in the third world doesn’t have to dispose of your old computers and be exposed to the toxic effects of this. If you’re not sending so much stuff to landfill, that’s better for the environment. You’re better off because you have more money in your pocket. You have less stuff in your house, so you feel better- physically and emotionally. You can give away more- stuff, money, time because you’ve freed up these aspects of your life.

If we eat seasonally, we don’t pollute the planet with carbon etc from air miles. We support producers local to us or forage for free. This should mean that fairtrade is in operation, instead of some poor person in another country not getting paid enough. If you buy reduced food from supermarkets, you’re stopping it being put in the bin.

If you employ the principle of buying quality items, rather than cheap- hopefully children aren’t working in sweat shops in India making your clothes. Maybe it will even bring industry back to the UK? Your clothes will last longer and you no longer believe in the invention that is ‘fashion’.

I’d love to hear your comments about any other benefits of minimalism you can think of.