An Out of the Box Approach to Climate Change
Imagine a world with zero waste. Where carbon neutral was the standard. No waste. No pollution. No climate change.
It seems like a fantasy, especially considering that current predictions by The Ellen MacArthur Foundation and World Economic Forum that state by 2050, plastic in the oceans will outweigh fish, our topsoil will have eroded, and in some regions we will have more frequent wildfires and longer periods of drought.
But that is not our reality...yet. We can change the future, and it starts with changing our behaviors today.
A POST HOLIDAY RUNDOWNAs tradition would have it, every year ends with a month long celebration that results in excessive spending and overconsumption by the masses. It’s a holiday tradition that results in 25 million tons of waste - about 1 million extra tons per week - created between Thanksgiving and New Years.
But as singer Bob Dylan wrote, “the times they are a changin", because with every new day and new year, there is an opportunity to right our wrongs, create new traditions, and bring awareness to outdated behaviors that no longer serve our current reality and future environmental vision.
DUKING IT OUT WITH BOXING DAY
After the main celebrations, there is still yet another holiday tradition to contend with. December 26 is Boxing Day in the UK, originally a day reserved for giving to the poor. Today, it is now a week-long celebration in the US and around the world, for retailers to end the year strong with significant holiday markdowns.
And while these bargain buys might be tempting to holiday shoppers, the cost to the planet is high. Too high.
It’s time to ring out the old and ring in the new. “Unboxing” an outdated, pollution-causing holiday, and resolving to close the year on a box-less note. A cardboard-free, unboxing of sorts, so we can put a stop to the damage to the planet, and maybe even create a hierarchy of expectations we apply to shopping in 2021.
AN OUT-OF-THE-BOX NEW TRADITION
It’s time to create some new holiday traditions that help us truly celebrate our lives and the planet. Because in this year of great change, nothing could be better but to create intentional change.
We’re declaring an unboxing of sorts, on Boxing Day. Here are a few suggestions for you to create a new out-of-the-box tradition of things to do on this formerly frenzied shopping period that will have you AND the planet breathing a sigh of relief.
SPEND TIME IN NATURE
In today’s online world, shopping has become so easy and habitual, we almost don’t realize we are doing it. We’ve all seen the ads of the sites we have clicked on, that follow us around the internet, tempting us with every click.
In nature, however, it is hard not to feel in awe of the world around us. When we leave technology behind and even just take a walk in the neighborhood, there is a stillness and sense of something greater around you.
Take a walk in nature today, and you’ll not only decompress from all of the holiday busyness and get some exercise, but you may even be inspired to stop shopping completely.
PLANT AN EDIBLE GARDEN
Instead of shopping for the one time thrill of purchasing something new, plant an edible garden that will keep giving to you throughout the year.
Planting a garden has been shown to reduce stress, boost self confidence, creativity and resilience in kids and adults, plus you’ll be giving back to yourself and the planet with healthy, tasty, and fresh produce free of synthetic chemicals or pesticides.
USE UP YOUR LEFTOVERS OR DONATE TO THOSE IN NEED
Americans throw away 40% of all food throughout the year and 25% more during the holidays. In 2020, the More than 50 million people, including 17 million children are facing food insecurity.
The day after Christmas is a great day to repurpose your holiday leftovers into new meals to avoid food waste, or take an outing with your family to volunteer or donate to your local food bank.
Turning this day known for spending, into a day that can be remembered for sharing, is a purposeful tradition that may turn this holiday experience into a tradition you want to repeat.
BUY FROM ZERO WASTE BRANDS
Don’t get us wrong - we’re not against shopping. There is a purpose to getting new things - whether it is a new sustainable merino wool sweater, or a new pair of snow boots. When it is done with intention, it actually can be a great way to celebrate our sustainable lives.
Support and buy from zero waste brands, who do the sustainable work for you.
What is a zero waste brand?
A zero waste philosophy like the one Nui upholds, is based on waste prevention and taking into consideration the lifecycle of the item. The goal is for no trash to be sent to landfills, incinerators or the ocean. In a zero waste system, products are premium quality, sourced from carbon neutral natural sources, and can be reused or repurposed to the optimum level of consumption. Packaging is designed to biodegrade.
It’s a sustainable carbon neutral system.
In other words, buying from zero waste brands means zero waste. Sustainability made simple.
A NEW WORLD
As we head into 2021, it’s time to make our New Year’s resolutions and commit to the future world we want to see, rather than the past behaviours that unconsciously became life as we knew it.
If 2020 was a year of unexpected change, 2021 can be a year of intentional expectations and forward moving change. We CAN undo the damage done to the environment, and it starts with new habits, new traditions, and new expectations.
We’re in it together. This is our Nui world. And it matters.
“I did then what I knew how to do. Now I know better, I do better. - Maya Angelou