How Be To Eco-Conscious During a Pandemic

Good morning, today I wanted to discuss some problems and solutions/modifications I have come across over the past few months amid
COVID-19 and the new restrictions. This is a difficult topic because these 2 very prevalent issues contradict each other on many occasions. So above all else, do what you can do and what you feel safe doing.

Problem #1 : Not being able to use your reusable cup

There’s a couple options here, one is to make your coffee at home! But when this isn’t possible (or well you know you just really want that Ice Coffee) ask for a sip lid or at least refuse a straw and use your own. While this isn’t a perfect solution it does at least help.

Problem #2 : Gloves

Okay so unless you are a health care professional or someone working in the food industry, you don’t need to wear gloves. Gloves only give the illusion of being better because realistically most people wearing them are not handling or disposing of them properly and therefore causing more spread and exposure. You are better just washing your hands. You should never touch your face out in public (regardless of COVID), and washing your hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 secs every chance you get. Instead of gloves, try hand sanitizer. If you really insist on using gloves, educate yourself on proper handling/disposal and NEVER just leave them on the ground (you’d be surprised how often I have seen this…)

Problem #3 : Masks

Again, do what you can and what you feel safe doing, but where possible use a reusable mask. Using a resuable masks does not mean you can resuse them before you wash them. It’s best to have a few and then wash them all together so your not doing laundry as often (thus better for the enviroment). The best thing you can do is stay 2m (or 6ft) away from other people wether or not you are inside or outside or wearing or not wearing a mask or still within the restricted number of people allowed where you live.

Problem #4 : Reusable bags

This is probably the most simple fix, most places still allow reusable bags they just ask you to not place it on the counter which is a fair request. In these situations just hold your bag and fill it.

Problem #5 : Bulk Food Stores

This will vary based on location but my local Bulk Barn is still providing service however you have to stay at the front of the store while the employees gather your items (which might I say I actually prefer) and put them in plastic bags. While this is not a perfect solution, this is still far less packaging (less plastic) for most things compared to the regular grocery store.

Some other tips :

While some “classic” zero-waste swaps may not be suitable for this weird time, here are some other things you can do to help the earth is other aspects of your life.

  1. Turn the water off while you brush your teeth, wash your face and shorten your showers
  2. Compost food scraps or freeze your vegetable scraps and make veggie broth
  3. If you’re not vegan, try incorporating more meatless meals
  4. Plant your own veggies and herbs
  5. Water plants in morning or at night to minimize evaporation
  6. Swap makeup remover wipes for a reusable alternative
  7. Support local! Or at least minimize online shopping and order everything at once to lower packaging and emissions from shipping
  8. Swap books & clothes with friends
  9. Borrow books from your local library through an app
  10. Upcycle clothes and item you find around your house

Thank you for reading, check back next Friday, or subscribe to be notified via email below. How are you trying to be more eco-conscious?
Leave a comment below.
~Tori Scherle~

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I'm 22 years old and starting my Masters in Biology at the University of Ottawa in September. I just recently graduated with my Honours BSc - Biology. I love photography, baking, plants & adventures!

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