Living A 'Zero-Waste Life' Is Only Possible If You're Privileged

Living A 'Zero-Waste Life' Is Only Possible If You're Privileged

Thank you for your dedication to the environment, but check your privilege.

Living A 'Zero-Waste Life' Is Only Possible If You're Privileged
Didriks / Flickr

So, you're zero waste. Good for you, and thank you for your commitment to creating a healthier environment.

However, just know that you're privileged.

Before you go around lecturing people about how they should to make the commitment to be zero waste, understand that this is not possible for everyone, and the fact that you can live this lifestyle means that you have privilege.

About a year ago, I first heard about this "zero waste" movement. For those who do not know, a "zero waste" lifestyle means that you produce zero waste.

Yup, you heard me, none. Zilch.

This lifestyle choice includes buying in bulk with resources such as glass containers, never buying food in non-recyclable packaging, and much more so that nothing gets sent to the landfills. I often ponder people's dedication to this lifestyle. Seriously, if you think about it, you have to think of everything down to how you're going to get your shampoo. It's a humongous lifestyle change and is a laudable one at that. Honestly, I have so much respect for people who can do it; their commitment to a healthier earth is wonderful.

While I have never attempted zero waste, I began to come around to the idea of really watching my carbon footprint. I began to notice little things I could change to reduce my waste. I started using reusable grocery bags, using washcloths rather than paper towels, and much more. I mean, the littlest form of reduction helps, right? This is where I suddenly became apprehensive about this movement.

The other day I was ordering my diabetes supplies for my insulin pump. These supplies include disposable-only tubing, plastic contraptions, and tools sealed in tons of trash. With my waste reduction thought process turned on, I realized that getting these supplies without the waste that comes with it is unfeasible, as it protects and keeps my medical material sanitary.

Thousands of people have this disease and there is no option to clean this equipment as it would lead to infection and is just not possible. It's waste, but it's necessary waste. Upon the thousands living with type one diabetes are people with other medical complications. People who rely on all sorts of supplies that will eventually end as waste to keep them alive.

You can make drastic changes to your lifestyle even if you have complications not allowing you to be zero waste. Examples include, but are not limited to, using reusable water bottles, bringing your own travel mugs to coffee shops, and recycling as much as you can. These are little, but make a huge impact.

I am not advocating that people just start tossing everything in landfills, as I know how positive a zero-waste lifestyle could affect the planet. All that I am saying is that before you go lecturing people about how they too should dedicate time into a zero waste lifestyle, check your privilege — It really is not possible for a large number of people.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

119 People Reveal How The Pandemic Has Affected Their Love Lives, And Honestly... Relatable

"I haven't been able to get out of the 'talking phase' with anyone."

The reality is, there's no part of life the pandemic hasn't affected. Whether it's your work life, your home life, your social life, or your love life, coronavirus (COVID-19) is wreaking havoc on just about everything — not to mention people's health.

When it comes to romance, in particular, people are all handling things differently and there's no "right way" of making it through, regardless of your relationship status (single, taken, married, divorced, you name it). So, some of Swoon's creators sought out to hear from various individuals on how exactly their love lives have been affected since quarantine began.

Keep Reading... Show less

Preview These Top Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2020 Picks — From Luxury Purses To Skincare

Currently 3 million people viewing the Stella McCartney purse I absolutely must have.

Online shopping has been a guilty pleasure of ours for years, but now more than ever it's been a shopping lover's outlet for all our home redecorating projects and resort wear we're purchasing for that trip we had to cancel.

One of my favorite places to (virtually) window shop has always been Nordstrom. I admittedly can't afford to go on sprees there often, but I still get a high off of adding things to my cart I know I'll never actually end up buying. But sometimes, that's not enough — that's when I, like the masses of luxury-, beauty-, fashion-, and decor-lovers around the world count the days down to the annual Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

5 Things That 'Shameless' Got Wrong About Bipolar Disorder

There is so much more than Ian and Monica lead viewers to believe.

"Shameless" is a hit television series that airs across the world, for my own personal viewing on Netflix. While the show is a major hit, people aren't talking about the issues in the portrayal in the "mental health" category. Ian and Monica are both pretty important characters with bipolar disorder (BD). There are, however, five major flaws with what their bipolar looks like.

Keep Reading... Show less

Dear Grandma,

I wish my words could adequately explain how much I miss seeing your smile and hearing your laugh. You were such a bright ray of sunshine in my life and now that you're gone, I can't help but remember all the times we had together.

Keep Reading... Show less

Rihanna is known for many things: her music, fashion, makeup, and now skincare. As a makeup artist myself, I can confidently say that she rocked the makeup world when she released her makeup line in 2017 and has been influencing the beauty world ever since.

Trying some of her makeup products myself, I know that she doesn't skimp on quality, and even though some of her products may be a little pricey, trust me, you get what you pay for.

Keep Reading... Show less

Friends, no one needs to be reminded that the COVID-19 pandemic rages on in the U.S. Frankly, this is because we have all collectively decided not to do the one simple thing that was asked of us and wear a mask.

I could make this a very boring article, and berate you with facts and statistics and the importance of wearing a mask, but I have opted against that for both of our sakes. Instead, I will attempt to reach you in another way. You might not care about a disapproving look from me, but from Nick Miller? Maybe that will be enough to change your mind.

Keep Reading... Show less

I don't want to point fingers or call anyone out, but it seems as though since the school year came to a close and summer officially started, more and more people began to care less and less about coronavirus (COVID-19).

I understand that eventually you have to get on with your life and cannot live in isolation forever, but people are still dying, cases are still increasing, and COVID is clearly not going anywhere for the time being.

Keep Reading... Show less

Bombshell news coming from Bachelor Nation today, Tayshia Adams is replacing Clare Crawley as the bachelorette!

Rumor has it that Clare found her person early on in the process and did not want to continue with the process of leading other men on throughout the season.

Keep Reading... Show less

- Though as a little girl, I had the silkiest, softest hair that would get compliments everywhere I went, since I turned about thirteen I've since had coarse, dry hair no amount of deep conditioning masks or sulfate-free shampoo could fix.

- I started using the Raincry's Condition Boar Bristle Brush several months ago, and while I noticed that my hair had been softer, silkier, and shinier than it had ever been, I didn't make the connection because I never thought a simple hairbrush could make any difference in my hair texture.

- I will be the first to admit that I thought it was ridiculous to spend nearly a hundred dollars on a hairbrush, but this one eliminates the need for me to use any heat tools or styling products on it.

- I put some oil or a serum in my hair when it's wet, brush my hair with the boar bristle brush once it's dry, and end up with the lowest maintenance, shiniest hair I've had since I was 8 years old.


Keep Reading... Show less

The NBA is back, and for basketball fans, like myself, it has been the BEST news we have heard since COVID-19 shutdown play indefinitely. I mean, come on, we need to see if James Harden can once again perform so well he has back-to-back 50 point games, Kawhi can lead another team to the championship title, and whether Giannis is going to be back-to-back MVP... among like 500 other things running through our heads!

In the midst of all of the amazing statistics and records that these players are breaking, though, we also just love the NBA because well, there are some pretty good looking guys out there. Here are the 19 hottest NBA players (in no particular order) you would totally let slam dunk on you now that the NBA has returned.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments