Moving towards Zero Waste

As conscientiousness and care for the Earth and the natural environment grows in the face of the many environmental challenges and dangers which confront our planet today (including global climate change and environmental pollution), there is likewise a growing global movement towards sustainable living and the reduction of human waste.

The modern lifestyle of developed countries and economies is high in various forms of polluting waste, which are then discharged to the soil, air and water bodies of our planet. This is not only harmful to the natural order, but also to human health. Thus it is seen as imperative for human society today to reorient itself towards sustainable living and radically change its approach and way of dealing with waste.

One approach to sustainable living has been conceived as the philosophy and lifestyle of Zero Waste. According to the Zero Waste International Alliance, Zero Waste is defined as:

The conservation of all resources by means of responsible production, consumption, reuse, and recovery of products, packaging, and materials without burning and with no discharges to land, water, or air that threaten the environment or human health.

Thus Zero Waste is an ideal which everyone can strive to realize to help nurture and protect the natural environment and human society together in harmony.

Hierarchy of Zero Waste

According to the philosophy of Zero Waste, there is a hierarchy composed of various steps or stages by which the ideal of true sustainability can be approached and realized. Most of us would be familiar with this simplest hierarchy of three steps (the three R’s) which are: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. This sums up in most elementary terms the basic steps of the Zero Waste approach:

  1. Reduce: Reduce as much as possible one’s excess consumption and ultimately one’s production of waste. Examples include: buying only what one really needs, buying products in bulk or with less packaging or those which can be reused, repairing items when feasible instead of throwing away and buying new ones.
  2. Reuse: Reuse includes using reusable storage and packaging materials like cloth bags and glass jars, repairing broken items instead of replacing, and repurposing or rehoming unwanted or items which are no longer useful to oneself.
  3. Recycle: Recycle means to recycle waste items that can be recycled, after one has already reduced and reused as much as possible. This prevents the accumulation of waste in landfills. Many items are recyclable including, glass, plastic, cardboard, paper, metals, batteries, etc. Recycle also includes composting food and plant materials.

This hierarchy of three steps can be further expanded into 5 R’s or even 7 R’s, adding additional and details and ramifications of the three basic R’s including, but not limited to:

  • Rethink: Rethink every aspect of your lifestyle and consumption to reduce as much as possible your negative impact on the environment, including the amount of waste you produce.
  • Refuse: Refuse to purchase unneeded, wasteful or non-recyclable products, or those in wasteful or non-recyclable packaging. Refuse one-time use products in favor of those which can be used over and over again or repaired to usable condition when they break down. Refuse to support companies that have harmful environmental impacts.
  • Repurpose: Repurpose items which are no longer useful in their original form, instead of discarding them. This is also popularly known as “Upcycling”. This can be a very enjoyable and creative, artistic process!
  • Rot: Compost all your food and plant waste into a nutrient-rich soil amendment for your garden. Cooking oil waste can also be turned into biodiesel and used as fuel!

Following these basic principles of the Zero Waste hierarchy in our home, office or business is how we can all contribute to a sustainable human footprint on Earth.

Zero Waste Packaging in Auromere Products

We at Auromere are very inspired by the ideal of eco-friendly and sustainable living and have been slowly at work developing eco-friendly, Zero Waste packaging for some of our most popular Ayurvedic body care products. These now include:

  • Auromere Ayurvedic Toothpaste (in-a-jar): Our most popular product (toothpaste) in our most popular flavor (Fresh Mint) now packaged in completely reusable and recyclable glass jars!
  • Auromere Ayurvedic Bar Soap: All five varieties of Auromere bar soap come minimally packaged in 100% recyclable paper and cardboard.
  • Auromere Ayurvedic Shampoo Bar: Auromere Ayurvedic Shampoo-in-a-bar replaces liquid shampoo in plastic bottles and comes minimally packaged in the same way as our bar soaps.
  • Auromere Tongue Scraper: An Ayurvedic tongue scraper made of high-quality stainless steel with plastic-free 100% recyclable cardboard packaging.

Auroville, the City the Earth Needs

Besides our move to Zero Waste packaging as much as possible, and our sustainable lifestyle choices as individuals and as a company, Auromere also supports the burgeoning township of Auroville (The City the Earth Needs) in Tamil Nadu, southern India. Auroville is a global leader in sustainable living and 10% of all of Auromere’s profits go towards support and development of the township.

Read more about a few of Auroville’s diverse approaches to sustainable living and Zero Waste at the following links:

For the sake of the Earth and the future of the human species, let’s all be part of the solution!

***With all best wishes for your health and well-being from Auromere***

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