Tag Archives: composting

Two Week Challenge Completed!

Second week of landfill rubbish.

Second week of landfill rubbish.

I have completed my two week Zero Waste challenge, this is what I am sending to landfill this week.  There are two bags of frozen vegetabes that came from a clandestine rubbish bag that appeared in a corner of the kitchen. From that bag I rescued a plastic disposable cup and the bag itself which was a bit dirty from a plant I was given as a present, so I washed it and hung it on the washing line to dry.  Apart from the vegetable bags I am satisfied that I have achieved my goal of reducing the rubbish in my home to almost nothing.  I didn’t have to put my black bin out this week!

This week I am sending the following to landfill:

  • Two frozen vegetable bags.
  • Some plastic film – I can’t remember where it came from
  • Cellotape- someone sent me a letter in a paper envelope and put cellotape in a criss-cross on the back of the envelope.
  • The plastic from a Veet wax strip- I hope to eliminate these if I get the hang of sugaring.
  • The plastic from another Huggies Bed Mat that I had forgotten about.
  • Plastic seals from bicarbonate of soda and baking soda containers, I bought these knowing that a little bit of plastic film was going to save me a lot in the long run as I would be using these for baking and toiletries.
  • A used tea-light, cotton buds and a plastic seal from a bottle which I found under my bed when I was cleaning the floor.

How My Life Has Changed So Far

zero waste

The two week challenge may be over but my house has not seen the last of Zero Waste.  It has been such a positive and empowering experience that I am going to continue in my endeavour not to send rubbish to landfill.  A whole new world has opened up to me now that I am conscious of waste and I do not want to go back to the dark days.

  • I now shop differently, I choose different products that I didn’t notice before, I read the recycling information on the packaging and I am discovering new places to shop.
  • I am baking my own cakes at home which has multiple advantages: it keeps the children entertained, the house smells great and the oven heats the kitchen.
  • I have been given a spinach plant and hope to start a vegetable patch, in the meantime I am buying seasonable vegetables from White Oaks organic farm.
  • I am composting my kitchen scraps along with grass cuttings from the garden.
  • I am learning to make my own toiletries and have switched to using the Mooncup.
Zero Waste Home - Blog

Zero Waste Home – Blog




Plant Based Plastic

Ten years ago, Helmut Nägele and Jürgen Pfitzer had an idea. Now, their persistence has paid off. Their company, Tecnaro, successfully produces Arboform — a material made from wood that can be processed like plastic, but unlike plastic, it’s biodegradable.  It won the two entrepreneurs the 2010 European Inventor Prize organised by the European patent Office.

Running time: 4mins 30 seconds.  Uploaded to YouTube : 7 Jul 2010

ARBOFORM® is liquid wood

They now make three types of biodegradable plastic materials:

Derry – Worst District Council for Recycling

Derry City Council has lowest recycling figure out of 26 Councils

Derry City Council (DCC) has the lowest rate of recycling and diversion from landfill in Northern Ireland at 26.9%.  This compares to the highest, Banbridge, at 61.1%, and a total recycling rate for Northern Ireland of 43%.

Furthermore, DCC’s recycling rate has actually fallen by 5.7 % since 2008.  During the same period, all other councils in Northern Ireland, without exception, increased their recycling rate, by an average of 10%.  These figures pose questions that DCC should answer:

  • Is all the waste that Derry householders diligently put into recycling bins, or take to recycling centres, actually being recycled by Derry City Council, or is some of it being sent to landfill ?
  • Why have the brown bins, that other councils use for organic waste recycling, been locked up for years at the Strathfoyle recycling centre?  Is DCC’s position at the bottom of the recycling table due to incompetence, or a deliberate policy to undermine recycling as the primary waste management strategy, in order to justify gasification/incineration ?


Why no Composting?

During the discussion after Thursdays Mark Patterson show a Strathfoyle Foyle resident asked “Why is Derry City Council not making plans for a composting service for household organic waste?”

It can’t be because of a lack of Brown Bins … because the council has caged up a large herd of brown bins at the Strathfoyle recycling centre which just happens to be situated 100 meters from the site of the proposed gasification/incinerator!