Earth Day: How about no trash in Seattle?

It’s Earth Day again! Break out the recycled-paper banners and … well, what does one do to honor Earth Day?

This year I would like to highlight the work of one Seattle-based website that’s doing its part towards sustainability by offering an event called No Trash Week. The goal of this event is not to eliminate garbage entirely but to become mindful of what areas of your life generate waste and make changes that are reasonable for you. Participants are asked to, “Think about what you eat, how you commute, how you move things from place to place, how you share information and take notes…”

From April 20 to 26 you can post your daily trash tally on the No Trash Week website and share useful feedback and support with other participants. I am looking forward to discovering more sustainable ways to interact with the Library over the next week, both as an employee and as a patron!

Have you thought of ways to make your library experience “greener”? Or perhaps you have your own Earth Day traditions? Please share your thoughts with us. Then take a moment to peek at No Trash Week where I’ll be posting about my progress throughout the event.

8 thoughts on “Earth Day: How about no trash in Seattle?”

  1. Thanks for the link: my goal is now to have a Less Trash Week, starting Sunday. One of my co-workers (I work at the Central Library downtown) brought a couple of purple PCC reusable grocery totes for all of us in our department to use for those pressing trips to Bartell Drugs (where I apparently am compelled to go daily). It was a brilliant idea. I’m compulsive about bringing my own tote to the grocery store and then back home, but hadn’t made the leap to doing the same at work, or making it easier for my co-workers.

  2. What a cool idea. Thanks for telling us about this project. I’m going to keep all my garbage –if I have any- in one container and weigh it at the end of the week to see how it stacks up to the average weight. One thing I recommend: stop giving people stuff, take them out to a movie, gallery, rollerblading or something instead. You’ll be happier and they will too.

  3. I recently started reusing my bags from the grocery store, bringing them back when I had to make a trip to the store. It wasn’t as “inconvenient” as I thought it would be and it was astonishing how many fewer bags I ended up with floating around my house. But then I was at the downtown library and I found something even better at the Library Shop: An incredibly stylish (blue and brown batik…) and compact reusable nylon bag. It folds up to fit into your purse. And unfolds into a bag about as big as a paper grocery sack. Ingenious! And it’s cute. I have sworn off grocery bags for GOOD.

  4. Hi-
    This IS a very good idea…hopefully we will all take the no trash week to heart and make it a no trash month, or year, or way of life! One of the joys of travel is learning how people solve common problems. When I was in the French countryside, we planned our itinerary around the little towns’ market days. Everyone had a shopping basket/bag of some sort and it was a common to see a couple of leeks and a sunflower stem peeking out the top of the basket. All of the food was grown locally and so beautifully fresh and tasty. And everyone came out on market day and chatted with each other, walked their dogs, and bought baguettes. If you purchased something and you didn’t have a shopping bag/basket, the look of disdain was palpable…so I quickly purchased a wonderful basket that I have been using for the past 3 years!

  5. Thanks Brandi, for keeping us thinking of what we can do for Earth Week.
    We converted to the smallest garbage can available from Seattle Public Utilities, the microcan:
    The smaller your can is, the less you pay too!

    I also started making my own yogurt, which eliminates the tons and tons of plastic containers that I would normally buy. Plus there are no added ingredients in my yogurt!

  6. I’m digging this post and the resulting comments. Bringing your own bag to the library is a stellar idea. Another “green” library tip I’d like to pass on to others is to NOT print out your receipt when you check out books. If you’re a frequent library user like me, think of the paper (and trees) you save by choosing not to print a receipt (which, if you renew your books, becomes obselete quickly anyway). To find out when your books are due, check your account on line using My Account or, if your Internet access is down, call the librarian and have them check for you.

  7. Thanks for the post, Brandi.

    For those with backyards, a compost bin is a nice way to recycle and see the process at work. Plus you get to read books with titles like “Worms Eat My Garbage” which is a classic from 1982 by Mary Appelhof. It’s right up there with the Illiad, Charlotte’s Web, or the Spider and the Fly. 😉

  8. I had a worm bin for a long time, in the form of a pretty cedar box, which was so clean that I could even keep it in the house in winter without attracting bugs or anything. Thanks for the incentive to dig it out and get it going again!

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