With #BlackFriday and #CyberMonday around the corner, we need to take a moment to think twice and consider the impact our purchases have. Anno 2022, there shouldn’t be a need to discuss the ugly truths of the unsustainable #overconsumption promoted by such “events”, but here we are.
Virtually all products (and their packaging) are designed to be thrown away – none of them is designed with #circularity in mind (to return and be remade). Besides being wasteful, this process is fueling climate change, destroying nature and is based on exploitative labour. Ultimately, products on sale are never cheap – someone or something has to pay the price. So, if you can afford to skip the Black Friday craze, please do.
According to research, more than 80% of the purchases will be dumped or burned within a year. Only tiny fractions of the used materials are retrieved and used again. But most of that ends up in landfills or incinerators shortly after due to low-quality recycling processes.
So, let’s take the R’s from Black Friday and Cyber Monday – and add a few more – and remind us of the waste management steps to sustainability:
♻️ #Rethink – whenever you shop, ask yourself if you really need it. If the answer is yes, consider going second-hand.
♻️ #Refuse – make smarter purchasing decisions and refuse to buy wasteful and non-recyclable products.
♻️ #Reduce – buy less and become less dependent on harmful, wasteful, and non-recyclable products.
♻️ #Reuse – don’t join the throw-away culture. Choose reusable items, and don’t toss items that are still fine.
♻️ #Repair – join the repair movement and try to fix your items before you toss ‘m.
♻️ #Repurpose – try to find another use for an item (or parts of it) before you send it to the landfill.
♻️ #Recycle – put things back into the correct waste stream to be used again for something else.
♻️ #Rot – if possible, opt for compostable items and packaging and let them decompose in a controlled environment.
And we can definitely squeeze #Regift in there! Don’t need it anymore? Consider gifting!