The Disposables: Choose Your Trash

The Disposables: Choose Your Trash

Aug 16, 2010 |  by  |  On the Homestead, Reducing Waste  |  Share

Trash. Is. Depressing. Ever seen a landfill? It’s depressing. How about a New York street on trash day? Depressing. Or what about the overflowing cans of rubbish in a stadium on game day? Yeah, that’s depressing too. And why is it depressing?

This is why, and this, and this, and those disposable razors too.

You see, the people and companies who could actually do something about this problem aren’t doing anything. Well, they are doing something, but instead of helping they’ve become a hindrance. A pain in the ass, if you will. And they do this in the name of convenience and ironically, sometimes in the name of cleanliness. So they come off as helping to make our lives easier and better when in reality they’re just making a mess.

And I get it, these are businesses and they’re all about the bottom line. So they sell products that have to be bought over and over again. We use it, throw it away, and buy another one, and they love it because they figured out a way to keep us tossing cash in their direction. In an entrepreneurial sense, it’s a brilliant concept. The problem is that it’s not the least bit socially responsible. And yes, I do demand a certain level of social responsibility from the commercial industry. After all, they have a great deal of command over our lives – from government and media to our everyday living. Proctor & Gamble, Swiffer, Clorox, BIC, the list of companies that perpetuate the idea that throwing things away is better and healthier is ridiculously long. Makes me a little sick, actually.

And what can I, as a single, living being do to rectify this? Make a list, of course.

So here it is. My list of disposable items that make up the most amount of trash in our home, in particular our kitchen and bathrooms:

The Nasty Little List of Disposables
  • toilet paper
  • paper towels
  • plastic grocery bags
  • ziplock bags
  • sponges
  • disposable razors
  • soap and cleaning product bottles
  • food packaging

And naturally, the purpose of having a list is to feel the joy of crossing items off that list. So over the next few days I’ll be focusing on one or more of the listed items, sharing my thoughts on ditching the disposables and going with a more permanent solution. Others have written about this type of thing on the web, but it tends to come from a mom’s perspective and I think a topic as important as this deserves a few words from a dude who cares just as much about the planet as the many well-respected, enviro-moms out there.

So no more foolin’ around. It’s time to get medieval on all this trash…

pixel The Disposables: Choose Your Trash


  1. I like your list
    my numBer one on my list is garbage bags
    you buy them simply to throw them away!!!

    On another note you should do a post on garbage disposers you know in your sink
    it’s better to compost than to send it down the drain
    now they have indoor compost bins even counter top ones

    • We bought a nice compost bin recently – still need to write about how that’s working out for us. Good luck with the garbage bag thing. You could always use a paper bag!


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