The recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report has highlighted the ever-increasing importance of doing our bit for the blue dot we call home.
We've all lived a lifetime with the convenience of single-use plastics, but 2021 brings us to a new era of insights and intelligence. We know more than enough to realise that single-use plastics are dead-set dreadful for the environment.
Our mission at Zero Co is to untrash the planet by stopping the production of new single-use plastic (SUP) and clean up the plastic junking up our oceans.
Not only are we in the business of eliminating SUP at your place (and homes right across the country), we're committed to playing our part in not just trying to stop global warming but trying to reverse it. And that’s why we’ve made our deliveries Carbon Negative.
While the findings in the IPCC report were nothing to celebrate, we've just purchased 100 tonnes of carbon offsets in respect of our FY21 Co2 emissions. As laid out in our intentions, Zero Co has committed to going carbon negative. You can read more about our carbon-negative plans here.
How to lower your carbon footprint: Every little bit helps!
It's more than business. As individuals, we can all minimise our carbon footprint and help the environment in different ways. We can all make changes at home, school, work or the way we choose to travel.
At Zero Co, we believe that our business has a responsibility, but all of our employees are agents of change too. The opportunity and potential of 'agency' that we all carry around in our skyrockets is compelling, so we asked around the office what others do to support the environment and minimise their footprint.
1. Choose Second Hand
One person's trash truly is another person's treasure. Alyssa, self proclaimed Captain of cheap-skatery and recent recruit to the new product department just purchased her second hand Google pixel 4 online. People re-buy new tech so often (we've all seen the lines at the Apple store), and this means you don't have to. Alyssa also revels in renovating and furnishing only via her favourite shop Facebook Marketplace.
“You save on tip fees and don’t add to landfill by putting items there for FREE (also my favourite price). I had a mattress, and some pallets picked up just last week. Plus, the challenge of waiting out for the perfect find is so addictive"!
Asher (the resident Untrasher), Zero Co's original Customer Happiness Hero is also a little obsessed with the Facebook Marketplace buys second hand whenever she can.
“I recently moved and needed to furnish my whole house. I managed to source 80% of what I needed off Facebook Marketplace, giving these pre-loved items a new lease on life and avoiding having new pieces built and shipped to me”.
2. Give it a Second Life
Second life isn't just about acquiring something second hand. Check out these second life DIY tips Alyssa shared!
“I purchased a white linen bedding set from my favourite shop (not a second hand but store closing everything must go type vibe), and now after 18 months of deep blissful linen induced snoozing, they are not so white anymore. Instead of buying new ones, I purchased some non-toxic dyes from Rit, so what is currently off-white will soon be the Azul verdoso (aka blue)”.
3. Mindfully move clothes on
Emma, who is positioned in the PR department, tries to sell all of her old clothes through second-hand marketplaces. It's not just about what you can pick up from these forums, it's about being mindful when it comes time to moving them on too. Did you know that on average an Australian sends 23 kilograms of clothing to landfill each year?
“It means something I once loved gets another life, I'm not contributing to a fast fashion landfill (a scary place to think about), and I get a few extra bucks to treat myself to a coffee”.
4. Grow what you can and be community minded
If you’re lucky enough to live in the Hinterland (or have access to a small plot of soil) Zero Co’s Marketing Lady has got a tip or two for you.
“Our family is all about reducing our food footprint by growing what we can on our property. Luckily up this way, pumpkins, tomatoes, cucumbers, passionfruit, avocados and citrus grow readily. We also try to reduce our meat consumption and what red meat we buy locally from friends who hand rear their animals. We end up with a freezer full of meat of all cuts that lasts for ages”.
5. Compost, and (win win, nothing in the bin) lower your food waste
“I'm not too fond of food waste and try hard to avoid that. Hot tip from my mum, take all of your leftovers, blend them with an egg and make fritters. It doesn't taste great, but tomato sauce fixes everything and NO food waste! Also Subpod,” says Jack, Our Special Projects Guy, but just also a special guy.
There’s no doubt that from time to time you won’t recognise something that has well expired and the tupperware is walking itself out of the fridge door. The bin is no place for this waste! Subpod is a great solution that enables a natural decomposition process to occur emitting the least amount of carbon dioxide, whereas the landfill is a major greenhouse gas offender.
6. Switch to an Ethical Super Fund
Annalyse, our Communications Lady, thinks there are plenty of things we are doing and can be doing. Better. Her theory is about staying open to change, doing your due diligence and taking action in any bloody way you can. She also thinks some of the less obvious things miss the spotlight, and it's the things that go beneath the radar that have the capacity for huge change. Like putting your money (literally) where your values are.
“It wasn’t until I hit my thirties when I started giving a sh*t about the state of my super. I paid even less attention to where my money was going—much of the time, the default funds are sending money back to the industries that are causing our planet harm. I'm no super expert, but I have been paying close attention to Future Super as well as a local lady who started up Verve Super for women. I'm ready to make the switch”.
There are plenty of ethical funds out there, so tell your employer you want to change. Today!
7. Walk or ride instead of drive
Zero Co’s Customer Happiness Hero Laura opts to walk or ride her bike instead of driving when she has the time.
“I needed a loaf of bread over the weekend. Instead of driving to the shops, I combined my exercise with my errand and walked to my local bakery. A triple win for me because I also avoided the plastic-wrapped, preservative-filled and tasteless bread from the supermarket too”.
8. Speak up, and be loud and proud about it
Raquel spends lots of hours a day online. Sir David Attenborough is her go-to resource for life advice and thinks it should be yours too. She is as good looking as she is funny and her collection of tidbit tips, well, sum it all up really.
“I don't buy supermarket meat or seafood very often. I don't commission my own tickets to outer space. I dob on tossers, and I take my home composting very seriously. I ALWAYS pick up rubbish when I'm at the beach, and every time I have more than three drinks, I tell anyone in a 10m radius all the horrific planetary stats I've learnt on the job at Zero Co”.
9. (Shock horror). Switch to Zero Co and go single-use plastic free at your place!
“It seems semi-obvious. But I really want to say 'switch to Zero Co'. Seriously. I was a customer before I was an employee and the high fives I give myself when I refill are outrageous. My recycling bin has gone down tenfold and I skip through the single-use aisles at the supermarket needing nothing”.
Our Operations Gun Mel has stopped going to the supermarket as regularly and reduced her own emissions in doing so. With Zero Co carbon negative deliveries everybody wins. If you want to be be just like Mel, grab a starter box today.
That’s a wrap (and actually a lot more than nine tips).
To all of our listeners, readers and customers (existing, new and future)! Thank you to everyone who helps the planet in big and little ways. Thank you for bothering to flick the single-use plastic switch, and taking your keepcup to the coffee shop each day. Thank you for donating to causes, offsetting your emissions and taking your reusable bags to the supermarket. Thanks for choosing an ethical super fund and reducing the meat you eat. Good on you if you have moved to solar, drive an electric car or ride a bike too.