What is the Zero Waste Lifestyle?

Go Zero Waste with a Reusable Water BottleBy Morgan O’Connor, Marketing & High Performance Building EcoFellow

Zero Waste is a movement to reduce the amount one consumes and consequently throws away. Adopting a Zero Waste lifestyle is one of the most sustainable ways of living. Zero Waste lifestyle choices influence all environmental areas by preventing resource extraction, reducing the amount of materials sent to the landfill or incinerator, and reducing pollution from producing, transporting, or disposing of materials.

Zero Waste is often shown as something not easily accessible (making your own soap just may not be practical in your life, for example), but it’s actually very easy to take simple steps toward Zero Waste. In fact, not only will you reduce waste, adopting a Zero Waste lifestyle can often be more affordable. Composting, buying second-hand, sharing when you can, or packing your own lunch are all simple steps you can take toward Zero Waste, all while saving money too!

There are a variety of ways one can practice Zero Waste habits, and some will make more sense for you than others. Challenge yourself to adopt some of the tips below. Soon you’ll be on your way to living the Zero Waste lifestyle.

Tips everyone can use to move toward the Zero Waste Movement:

  • Refuse what we do not need (for example, at restaurants opt to go strawless)
  • Reduce what we use, especially if we are not using it (we have lots of tips on how to reduce your wasted food, check out this blog here)
  • Reusing and using what we have until it no longer works, not when it no longer is in fashion (did you know our store, EcoBuilding Bargains, diverts 400 tons of material from the landfill every year?)
  • Repairing what we can
  • Recycling only when all previous options have been explored (here are some easy steps)

Introducing: Wasted Food Solutions

We are thrilled to launch our newest resource: Wasted Food Solutions. This website gives businesses, service providers, and policy makers access to the resources they need to address one of our biggest challenges: wasted food.

CET acts as a catalyst to accelerate the development of a vibrant marketplace to divert wasted food from the commercial and institutional sectors. We have been a leader in the wasted food reduction and diversion movement for more than 20 years, implementing some of the first wasted food composting programs in the country, and contributing to effective public policy.

We believe that better managing wasted food is critical in order to address climate change, feed more hungry people, and grow our economy. If you are a city, state or federal agency, industry group or foundation, and want to tackle the issue of wasted food, please contact us!

wasted food web


Businesses: navigate our webpage by your state to find resources that apply to you. Not in the Northeast? Visit the Toolbox for great resources across the county.

Service Providers: Find out how we can help you by visiting this page. Whether you’re a hauler, work in food rescue, or a compost facility, you and your customers can trust us and have confidence in our recommendations and assistance.

Partner with Us: If you are a government agency, foundation, or industry association, we can help you develop your wasted food reduction and diversion solutions. Visit us online to learn more.

Learn more about Wasted Food Solutions at these upcoming events:

NFL Tackles Waste at Super Bowl LII!

By Kevin Pink, Marketing & Development Specialist

This Sunday, the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles will square off in Super Bowl LII at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. Players have been training for months, preparing to give it their best effort on the NFL’s biggest stage. But away from the cameras, another competition will rage. The NFL’s Rush2Recycle program will be taking on stadium waste. Its goal? To recover at least 90% of waste generated during the big game- over

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Smart Party Planning: How to Reduce Waste BEFORE your guests arrive!

By Shelby Kuenzli, Digital Marketing EcoFellow

Is one of your goals this year to help reduce waste? Try starting with food waste! According to the USDA, 30-40 percent of food produced in the United States every year goes to waste. This corresponded to about 133 billion pounds and $161 billion worth of food in 2010. Wasted food that is sent to landfills quickly generates methane, a greenhouse gas. About 20% of the country’s methane emissions come from landfills. Food waste is definitely a big deal!

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Celebrate America Recycles Day with CET

By Morgan O’Connor, Marketing and High Performance Building EcoFellowAmerica Recycles DayToday is America Recycles Day! According to the EPA the United States recycles at a rate of around 34.3%, and with your help we can raise that even more! Recycling and composting are growing industries accounting for 757,000 jobs and $36.6 billion in wages, as well as an additional $6.7 billion in tax revenue. That is roughly 1.57 jobs for every 1,000 tons of material recycled! By increasing the amount we recycle we can conserve natural resources, while strengthening our economy!

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