The Friday 5: Waste Not, Want Not Edition

In a perfect world, we would use everything we have.

David Quilty, founder of The Good Human, recently wrote a story on being an ‘eco-sinner’. He writes: “We drive cars, we eat unsustainable food, we shop at big box stores, we use computers, we watch TV. Many of the eco-sins we commit are unavoidable in the modern world, and as much as I try to live a sustainable life, the fact is that none of us live a truly ‘green’ existence. It’s simply impossible.”

Agreed.

He touches on a lot of good points but there are a number of people counter-acting their so-called eco “sins” with tickets to a proverbial heaven where the pastures are a lot greener. Here are five stories we think stand out when it comes to being less wasteful.

Last week in New York City, EcoSalon had the opportunity to stop by the Textile Arts Center’s Yield Exhibit Making Fashion Without Waste. Is zero-waste something all designers can achieve? Does it simply take a lot of practice, like any art, to improve? We caught up with Yield curator Holly McQuillan to get some answers in EcoSalon at NYFW: Yield’s Zero Waste Exhibit.

Truth: In Britain, the amount of yearly food waste can fill London’s Wembley Stadium. Our very own Brit writer, Mike Sowden, says “We’re so careless with our groceries that we throw away around a third of them each year – at a total cost of $20 billion. Appalling, dreadful and…unreal.” In What Does $20 Billion In Wasted Food Look Like? we look at food waste as a horrific challenge that must be addressed.

Gone are the days of the McMansions representing anything but excessive waste. In their places have blossomed houses of purpose that cater to everything we need them to do and at a fraction of the size. Downsizing is noble and a challenge so we ask what it’s like to consider an even smaller, more drastic downscale. When it comes to tiny living, have we gone too far where our psychological health is being compromised living in such little spaces? In The Incredible Shrinking House, we take a look at the repercussions of little waste from so little a space in the context of mental health.

“Why must everything come in packaging that’s seemingly ready-made for nuclear meltdown?” asks writer Luanne Bradley – and who are the people who are putting our safety after their fears of product theft? In The Packaging of Our Lives, we give you solutions to all your over-packaged problems.

What six lifestyle choices endow the much-celebrated French women with their ageless beauty, trim figures, and je ne sais quoi? Well, it’s true they don’t eat much and when they do, it’s exceptionally good food and drink. They choose versatile and classic pieces for their wardrobes, and they walk, a lot. Waste not, want not – and leave it to the French to look so damn good while doing what they do. In Sex by Numbers: French Women Don’t Get Fat we take a look at these sensibly indulgent femme fatales.

 

Amy DuFault

Amy DuFault is a conscious lifestyle writer, consultant and fashion instigator. She resides in Cape Cod, Massachusetts.