As a complement to my last post about how much (or how little?) waste we generated in the last 6 months, I wanted to show you how we organised our disposal areas, as it helps us being more aware of our trash.
Our flat has two attendant balconies: one big in the living room and one tiny small in the kitchen. At first I thought it was silly that the balconies were split in two, but it turns out it is perfect to help us with our waste reduction goals. We have put all the bins (compost, recycling, and general waste) out on the tiny small balcony. The only disposal facilities we have inside are the paper and cardboard crate as humidity could be a problem, a glass jar for hairs and nail clips in the bathroom that get regularly emptied in the compost and a compost bowl on the kitchen’s counter top to store food scraps before it gets emptied once or twice a day.
Having the bins on the balcony is great because it frees a lot of space in the flat. But mostly, the fact that each time we need to get rid of something we have to go all the way out to the balcony forces us to be more aware of the things we throw away and give us time to think whether we could avoid this waste in the future. Making it somewhat annoying to trash things is a good motivation to generate less waste. You will tell me not everybody has the chance to have a special balcony to install their waste centre. It is true, but there are other alternatives like a garage, a remote storage closet… The point is that as a society we have been making it too easy to throw things away (where is this ‘away’ anyway?), like it is a natural thing to do. Do you know many species apart from humans that generate waste that cannot be absorbed by nature?