Imagine… 26 ways to a zero waste world

John Lennon invited us to “imagine all the people living life in peace.”

This week I invited the participants of our Facebook group to imagine they could bring in ONE new law or piece of legislation that would help to reduce waste.

Here’s what they imagined:

Tax single use plastics

Sheena said “Tax on single use plastic to go directly towards environment dept.

Michael agreed, he wrote “High DUTY and TAX on One way and Single use products, to push the change through.

Change packaging

Barbara imagined “all packaging must be recyclable or compostable

Lyn suggested “Ban on non recyclable packaging would be my first choice but needs to be followed up with heavy fines for anyone still putting recyclables in their landfill bin.

Tax plastic packaging

In a similar vein, Annie wrote “Tax manufacturers AND retailers AND consumers on plastic packaged products. All parts of the chain are responsible.

Ditch the disposables

Rich said “Get Rid of disposable nappies

Victoria suggested “Green tax. Tax on disposable products where a reusable option exists.

Kelly agrees, she writes “Ban disposable nappies and sanitary items

Helen added “Ban disposable plastics unless absolutely necessary, eg sterile equipment in hospitals.

Rachel said “Plastic bottle ban. Period.

All for one and one for all

Annie suggested “Hotels & businesses to recycle things the way households do

Enforced recycling

Emily said “I would make a law that all households/businesses/restaurants would have to use a recycling bin and an organic bin and it would be enforced. So many businesses just put everything in the landfill bin”

Ban plastic

Going for the strong approach, EmmaLouise wrote “Ban anything ever being made in plastic again unless there is absolutely no alternative and it would be harmful to life if it wasn’t produced.

Teresa wrote “Ban styrofoam containers and packaging.

Better recycling for consumers

Laura imagined “Put more facilities in place for domestic recycling of different materials. There are so many things that can be recycled but only apparently by businesses and on a domestic scale there’s only the basics in my area.

Moving up the waste hierarchy

Louise said “Currently business has to meet targets based around recycling. Policy needs to change to make this target focused on reuse in the first instance.

Bring back deposit returns

Mandy wrote “Bring back doorstep deliveries for milk, (in returnable glass bottles) and fizzy drinks in returnable (for a refund!) bottles

Jo agrees, she wrote “Bring back bottle/can deposit schemes

Eco friendly disposal

Claire said “Legislate to make all companies responsible for the environmentally friendly disposal of their product packaging, so as to motivate them towards minimal, compostable, biodegradable packaging options.

Ban the TTIP

Liz says “Ban the TTIP (Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership) and other trade agreements outright globally – The companies involved are interested only in profit regardless of the cost to humanity or the planet.

Give back to nature

Nikita wrote “Banning of animal agriculture. All land that is currently dedicated to animal agriculture would either be reallocated to plant agriculture, OR it would be “returned to the wild.””

Liv shared a similar idea. She wrote “I wouldn’t go as far to say ban because I do believe in the freedom of choice but a “cap” on how much land could be used for agriculture could be a good compromise (my cap proposal would include significant percentage cuts of land being used) but still allow some animal agriculture then people have a choice to consume but because the supply is down the price would be raised and less people would purchase anyway.”

Feed the world

Caitlin said “Make it a law that all restaurants and supermarkets have to donate their excess food to food banks and homeless shelters!

Liz suggested “how about garden space for every person?

Carbon rationing

John is thinking of the bigger picture with this idea “Personal carbon rationing, tradeable. There would be a carbon amount on everything you buy, not just the high carbon items like fuel, flights and meat, but everything, and items would be scanned with a card which has your remaining carbon quota on it.”

Carrots not sticks

I was fascinated to see that Amy was the only person who looked at rewarding, rather than punishing. She suggested “tax cuts for items that come with no packaging”

What about you? If you could bring in a new piece of legislation for a Zero Waste future, what would it be?

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Rachelle Strauss

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