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With only one planet in a closed-loop system (where physical matter can change form, but never exit our world nor disappear completely) and with a finite amount of natural resources and space for landfill waste, we must all reduce our consumption whenever possible.
Ideas for reducing waste:
- Avoiding one-time use containers like bottled water, take-out containers, and plastic bags
- Fill up your reusable container at our water bottle filling stations
- Join the campus Eco-Tray program
- Opt for a fabric or canvas tote bag when shopping
- Choosing products with less packaging
- Eating only what you can finish or saving leftovers
- Try bringing Tupperware-like containers when dining out
- Reusing or re-purposing what we already have
- Check out Pinterest or our boards for inspiration
- Design an outfit for the annual Eco-Fashion & Art Show with worn-out clothes and recyclable or waste items
- Saving money for memories rather than products
- Give the gift of an experience or do-it-yourself (DIY) gifts
- Not purchasing unnecessarily or as frequently
- Clothes: Embrace vintage and hand-me-downs; host a clothing swap party with friends. After the event, donate the rest. And if a new outfit is absolutely needed, go thrift store shopping, which has already-existing, new-to-you clothes. Buying new ones create more demand for companies to supply more.
- Electronics: Staying loyal to your current computer, tablet, or phone and not buying the latest every time. Corporations partake in what is known as “planned obsolescense.” This is the intentional production of consumer goods that are designed with nondurable products with hard-to-repair or limited quantity of spare parts. The goal of many corporations is to make as much profit as possible, so they frequently sell a “good product” and promote it as the “better product” in order to phase out the earlier model. Often times, this becomes unnecessary as the first version sufficiently gets the job done.
See our Sustainability Update for a monthly “Take Action,” where we offer tips to reduce, reuse, recycle, and respect regarding a myriad of topics. To sign up for this e-newsletter, please email email@example.com.
For questions about waste diversion, visit our FAQ page.
Responsible consumerism is more than being conscious about what we buy--it's about deciding if we need to buy new things in the first place. SCU is taking the lead in utilizing reusable products and reducing single-use items.
Makena Wong and Paloma Sisneros-Lobato were inspired to establish the Food Recovery Network at SCU after researching the organization for a project for their upper-division SLURP class.
A plastic bag ban will be in effect across California grocery stores and pharmacies as early as July 1, 2015.