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Zero Waste

Maggio 2019
È uno stile di vita che rispetta l’ambiente, basato sul riciclo e che ha come obiettivo quello di non generare rifiuti. Ti proponiamo qualche semplice accorgimento per aderire a questo movimento globale.

di Valentina Mercuri

File audio:

Zero Waste
Zero Waste
cloth bag
cloth bag

Speaker: Alex Warner (British accent)

Being aware of the harm we are causing to our planet is the first step towards switching to a more sustainable lifestyle. Every day, the media outlets report on the ever-growing plastic pollution accumulating in oceans worldwide, and the tremendous impact it has on the environment and even on our own health. Farming has been proven to have a huge carbon footprint because of the large amounts of energy it consumes. Similarly, livestock breeding for human consumption emits vast amounts of gases that contribute to global warming. So, what can we as individuals do to stop harming the environment? Zero Waste can be the answer.


The Zero Waste movement is based on five actions called the “5 Rs”.
1) Refuse the things you don’t need.
2) Reduce consumption and purchasing, and try to just buy stuff that is really indispensable since we already own enough things and huge amounts of them.
3) Reuse, and try to repair, as many things as possible, so don’t buy disposable objects, and try to give a second life to the ones you already have – this is also called ‘upcycling’.
4) Recycle everything you can.
5) Rot, meaning ‘recycle’ all organic materials, turning them into compost you can use as fertiliser.


In many cities around the world, local groups have formed to follow the Zero Waste philosophy. Their common mission is to promote sustainability by organizing talks and meet-ups to share insights and educate the community. A Zero Waste Week takes place every year in many countries all over the world. In the UK, for example, it takes place in the first week of September.


Avoiding plastic is the first step to help mitigate many environmental issues. How can you do it? You can start with simple actions like refusing straws for drinks, because they pollute the oceans. You can also carry a cloth bag when you go to the supermarket in order to avoid consuming plastic shopping bags. Note that in Norway every citizen uses only two plastic bags per year on average! You can use a glass bottle and refill it with tap water instead of plastic single-use bottles. With a zero waste approach you do not only reduce trash but also save money. The future depends on you, don’t waste it!  



Here are a few more little measures you can take if you want to be part of the solution:

1. Use public transportation instead of a private car; it has a lower environmental impact.
2. Buy things in local, second-hand and/or fair-trade shops.
3. Try not to eat meat every day and avoid plastic packaging for your food.
4. Do your laundry when the washing machine is full.
5. Unplug your devices, such as mobile chargers, when not using them. They consume energy even when not in use.
6. If you use air conditioning, the temperature should not be lower than 24ºC.
7. Turn off the tap when brushing your teeth or shaving.
8. If you go on a trip, empty and turn off your fridge to reduce energy consumption.


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