Weekly Waste Diary with Kevin

About This Series

This blog series provides readers with a chance to catch a glimpse in the life of a zero-waste lifestyle supporter. It documents the daily weekend activities of the blogger, as he/she generates waste from Friday to Sunday. Readers will be able to put their feet into someone else’s shoes through this blog series, and hopefully learn some good waste management tips for them to practice at home as well. These bloggers have experience in working with waste diversion and understand the concept of zero-waste quite well.

Let’s see how this week’s blogger will do!

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Meet Kevin

Kevin is currently a student at the The College at Brockport and a brave member of our Organics crew!


Monday

6:30 am- I’m thrown off by how dark it is this morning and I almost thought I got up an hour too early. You would think that after 22 years of experiencing day light savings twice a year, I wouldn’t be surprised anymore…  I put on a pot of coffee and ate a bowl of granola cereal. I don’t have class until 8am, but I like to get up a little earlier and have a relaxed morning and catch up on work. Before I head to class, I compost the coffee grounds and fill up my reusable water bottle.

12:15 pm- After classes, I eat my lunch in the college union that I packed last night. I packaged my lunch in a lunch box and in Tupperware, and kept the banana peel and apple core to compost later.

4:20 pm- I’ve been writing a chem lab report all day and I’m starting to get hangry before my afternoon chem class, so I grab a chocolate muffin and keep the paper wrapper and bag to compost when I get home.

6:30 pm- Noodle Monday!! This is the best dinner of the week, where my housemates and I all eat some sort of noodles/pasta together. I just made some spaghetti with some ‘meat’ sauce (vegan sausage, carrots, mushrooms, beans, onion, ect.). I’ve recently changed my diet to a more plant-based diet for environmental reasons. It hasn’t been as difficult as I thought it would be, and it’s been fun trying to cook alternatives to meat dishes. I know it’s not reasonable to have a lot of people switch their diets away from a meat central diet, but switching to a plant-based diet can have a very significant effect on the environment.

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I put the leftover pasta sauce back in the plastic container and the rest of my pasta in Tupperware.

11:30 pm- I’m still writing this chem report and made the mistake of opening a box of Thin Mints. I’m not proud of it, but I ate the entire box in one sitting.

Monday Waste

Reuse: Tupperware, pasta sauce container, pineapple cookie jar

Recycle: Pasta box, mushroom container, kidney bean can, cookie box

Compost: coffee grounds, banana peel, apple core, muffin wrapper and bag, pasta box, mushroom container, kidney bean can

Landfill: mushroom plastic, garlic bag, cookie wrappers



Tuesday

9:00 am- Woke up, put on a pot of coffee, and made a protein breakfast smoothie, tossing my banana peel and coffee grounds in the compost. As the garbage truck was coming down the street to get our trash, I realized that nobody had brought the trash/recycles out, so I quickly ran out, sorted, and brought the recycles/trash to the curb.

11:30 am- Before class, I ate some leftovers for lunch and fed my pet tortoise Rocco some lettuce feed. Usually, any food scraps that we have are fed to Rocco, or composted.

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2:30 pm- When I got home from class, my new phone came in the mail! After unpacking the phone, I thought I would have to throw away most of the packaging in the landfill, but the box and the plastic was recyclable, and I sent my old phone back to AT&T, so the only waste was from the plastic casing from the phone. I was also munching on some celery and hummus, composting the celery ends and keeping the empty hummus container to use as Tupperware.

6:00 pm- Time for chem lab…. We performed titrations in lab today for about 3 hours using hydrochloric acid and sodium hydroxide. I want to find chem lab fun and interesting, but I have it from 6-9:30pm and don’t really enjoy any of it. Any paper towels used in class were thrown in the trash, and one of our glass beakers had a crack in it, so that was tossed out as well.

9:40 pm- After lab I ate some leftover pasta for dinner and start studying for my midterms.


Tuesday Waste

Reuse: tortoise feed, hummus container

Recycle: phone box, plastic bag, old phone

Compost: banana peel, coffee grounds, celery, paper towel

Landfill: plastic wrapping from phone


Wednesday

7:00 am- Woke up pretty groggy this morning and took a shower. I put on a pot of coffee and compost the coffee grounds. I eat a quick breakfast and put the coffee in my mug before heading to class. On mornings like this, I kinda wish I drove to class, but I’m really trying to reduce my carbon footprint by walking rather than driving to class.

12:45 pm- I’ve done it again…. I made the mistake of opening my other box of girl scout cookies and ate the entire box again. I don’t know what they put in these, but I quite literally have no self-control while eating cookies.

3:00 pm- I drove to the store to grab some groceries. I didn’t bring any of my reusable bags because I didn’t plan on buying a lot. I picked up some lotto tickets and almond milk, won $10 from the tickets, and proceeded to drop the almond milk the second I walked out of Wegmans. Luckily, they replaced the milk for free, but I felt bad, and they most likely threw out the old milk.

4:30 pm- Got a long-needed haircut. I really enjoyed having my long hair, but it was starting to get unmanageable and it was time for a change. The nice thing is that now my showers will be much shorter, and I’ll start reducing my water use.

6:30 pm- Made a quick dinner of sweet potatoes and some leftover quinoa before getting back to studying for my Ecosystem Ecology midterm tomorrow. It’s a really interesting class, but the textbook is really dry, which makes studying a little difficult.

9:00 pm- Tonight is going to be a late night for studying, so I make a pot of coffee and start the grind and unfortunately I’m out of cookies to stress eat.

Wednesday Waste

Reuse: coffee mug

Recycle: cookie box, lotto tickets

Compost: coffee grounds, sweet potato, onion, garlic

Landfill: cookie wrapper, almond milk, hair


Thursday

9:00 am- Got up, put on a pot of coffee, and continued some last-minute review before my test.

11:30 am- I’m feeling fairly confident for this test, and I grab a banana before walking over to campus.

2:30 pm- I think I did pretty well on that midterm. I probably should have studied more than I did, but I feel pretty good about that test. It’s really nice out today for the first time in a while, so I go for a nice 14-mile bike ride before I start studying for my midterm tomorrow. I ate some leftovers from last night and take a quick shower after the ride.

6:15 pm- Today is my mom’s birthday, so we went out to a Tapas restaurant out in Rochester. It was really good, but pretty expensive. Any food we didn’t finish was tossed in the landfill (I assume) as well as a plastic chocolate box.

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8:00 pm- While I’m studying for my Invasion Ecology midterm, I eat a bowl of cereal and recycle the almond milk carton that I finished.

Thursday Waste

Reuse: water bottle, leftovers

Recycle: almond milk

Compost: coffee grounds, banana peel

Landfill: food waste, plastic container


Friday

9:00 am- I studied very late last night and slept in pretty late. I only had time to grab a banana and an apple before heading to class and grab a corn muffin at the college union. I save the peel, core, and wrapper to compost later.

1:30 pm- Once again, I probably should have studied more for this test, but I think I did pretty well, so I’m not too worried. Once that test is over, I’m finished with classes and tests and spring break finally begins! My housemates and I are heading to Toronto for the weekend, so we eat any leftovers that are still in the fridge so nothing goes bad.

Friday Waste

Reuse: leftovers

Recycle: None

Compost: apple core, banana, muffin wrapper


-Kevin


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