Sunday, April 30, 2017

Monthly Wrap Up - April 2017


What is it to be a good consumer? This is something that I've been thinking about lately. From politicised consumer revolts to discussions around meat consumption, sweatshop products or energy use.

I can't help but to think that we all turn a blind eye to aspects where the need for comfort is outweighed by negative outcomes. Diffusion of responsibility plays a role in this, too, of course.

In the end, we need to ask ourselves: What do I need? What do I want? And what can I do without?

---

April was a solid month. Even through some stressful times, I managed to find time for camping on the sand dunes near the southern ocean.


I didn't make any major changes to my 'system' in terms of food, cooking, waste and so on, however I did manage to sign up for the Live Below the Line. I'll be living on $2 a day for food and drink from May 1 - 5 to raise money for charity. I've made my goal, which is very generous of people!


My ingredients came to a total of of AUD$9.58, and will yield 2280 calories per day across five days with 20% protein, 15% fat and 65% carbs. 


---

Quite a bit of waste reduction this month: 


As always, the top row, from left to right, is glass, tins, paper. The bottom row, from left to right, is hard plastic, soft plastic, and miscellaneous.

Note that this is the waste that is leaving my house, everything is either used directly or stored for future use. Additionally, four beer cans from a party have not been included.

Daily Garbage - April 2017 - 30

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Daily Garbage - April 2017 - 01

Monthly Wrap Up - March 2017



What does it take for a system to break; what can a stable state endure before entering into chaos? This last month has been a very stressful yet rewarding time period. 

March saw some progress, but also presented plenty of challenges too. Old structures crumble, and the new structures are still forming. Change takes time, and effort. I've got plenty of time, but I'm slowly rebuilding up my effort mechanisms, which had been atrophying for too long. 

---

Food-wise, although I ate quite a bit of food while out and about (festival season; social dinners), I did find some success at home, too. I've continued to cook and prepare food in advance, with at least thirty meals or so in frozen storage at most times. This covers most lunches and dinners. 

A meal is made up of a carb base, protein component, overt fat and also additional flavours and spices. I've refined this process from last month, replacing couscous with potatoes, and introducing pumpkins as an overt fat. The best meal I made this month was a potato curry; filling and tasty. 




I upped my food organisation game, adding more legumes and beans, as well as spices. 





I've also started categorising waste into smaller bins throughout the month, as this makes it faster to sort through at the end of the month.  


Resource usage is also down compared to last year: electricity was running at a net positive, water use was down by twelve percent and gas by fifteen. 

As I've been using up toiletries, I've been replacing them with zero-waste, waste-free, vegan and / or bulk alternatives. 



But of course, it can't all be good news! I've been drinking a little more than I would like to, partially to deal with stress of work, drama etc. 

---

As was the case in February, I've been keeping track of my daily trash. Let's have a look and compare!


The top row, from left to right, is glass, tins, paper. The bottom row, from left to right, is hard plastic, soft plastic, and miscellaneous. 

Glass is about the same amount as last time. There are more tins, but only from the start of the month, as I was emptying out my pantry - I've pretty much completely removed tins from my base food process. There's plenty of paper and cardboard, largely because of the packaging for parts needed for work. 

I've started saving any paper or cardboard that seems suitable for starting wood heater fires in winter. Hard plastic has been greatly reduced, and soft plastic also. Purchasing the majority of food in bulk using mesh and paper bags has greatly reduced waste as well. 

I'll be receiving fewer things in the mail in April for work, so things should be further reduced then. 

Organic waste has been reduced by fifteen percent or so, compared to February. 


---

The general has been positive - there were even six days where no non-organic waste was generated - but the change compared to February hasn't been huge. I'm hoping to get a chance to go hiking in April, too, so that should be great. 

Be awesome, take care, and stay tuned!

Daily Garbage - March 2017 - 31