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Zero Waste workshop offers tips to eliminate household garbage

By Brian Lockhart

That trip you take to the curb to deliver this week's load for garbage collectors means you are placing another bag of garbage into a landfill site.

Modern society provides a lot of material that is wasted every single day. From plastic water bottles to all that packaging that surrounds products you buy, much of it can't be recycled or reused. 

But a Caledon woman is proving that with some effort and thought, you can reduce the amount of waste your household produces.

Nancy Lotecki-Neely founded Zero Waste Caledon in an effort to show people how changing your lifestyle can reduce your impact on the environment.

She hosted a workshop at the Orangeville Public Library to demonstrate many tips that will help you sustain an almost waste-free existence. You just have to work at it.

Ms. Lotecki-Neely doesn't just teach these methods – she does it every day.

She brought a small jar to the workshop that showed how much waste her house has produced this year through constantly reusing or carefully recycling products. The jar had about as much waste products as a lot of people normally have in their automobile glove compartment. 

“I think a lot of people are interested in producing zero waste,” Ms. Lotecki-Neely explained. “My goal for 2019 is to create this one jar of garbage to reduce my plastic use and increase recycling. My goal was to see if it was possible. The second goal was to reduce my plastic use. I didn't want to end up moving things from the garbage bin to the blue bin. I wanted to cut it all down. And thirdly, I want to see if I can inspire other people to do the same.”

She was inspired after reading about the ‘zero waste' movement and decided to try it and see if it was even possible.

Starting this type of project, Ms. Lotecki-Neely said, can begin by not bringing waste materials home in the first place. She uses reusable containers to create her own packaging at stores rather than use store packaging that will become waste later.

“Plastic is the bulk of the garbage that comes of out of people's homes and most of that plastic isn't recyclable. If it comes in a package that will end up in the garbage I won't buy it. For this whole year I just haven't been buying things that create garbage from packaging. It's not as hard as you think. You just have to set up a system. 

“I had to figure out were to buy meat that doesn't come in a package. I had to figure out to buy fruit and vegetables that doesn't come in a package and I found all of those places.”

The workshop offered all sorts of methods of reducing your household garbage, recycling, and composting. 

Ms. Lotecki-Neely even shows visitors how to make your own environmentally friendly dishwasher detergent tablets for only eight cents each. 

You can learn more about zero waste by visiting the Facebook page at:

Post date: 2019-10-03 16:19:03
Post date GMT: 2019-10-03 20:19:03
Post modified date: 2019-10-10 09:56:06
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