I did it! I moved...zero waste style. I had been anticipating moving and was wondering if I would be able to do it waste free. It took a little more planning and creativity but this move was the easiest and most efficient moving experience I've ever had.
I want to share with you my top four moving tips:
I found this a great opportunity to get rid of the things that have no real meaning to me. We always think we are going to miss things more than we do. I donated three bags of clothes to the Salvation Army, and to be honest, I barely remember what was in them. I sold more valuable items on Craigslist, like an old iPod and a digital camera. I got some quick cash and met some really cool people (like a mango farmer). It also felt good to put something out into the world knowing someone would be using it, rather than collecting dust in my drawer.
Keep only the essentials and the things that bring you joy. You'll start to appreciate relationships and experiences much more when you aren't attached to material items. The more you have the more you want, and the less you have, the less you need. Funny how that works!
2) Reusable boxes!
Say goodbye to endless boxes and oodles of tape. I went on Craigslist and found these big rubber bins. It was great because they were already in circulation and I'll be able to reuse them and even lend them to friends when they move (I've already got two requests). I'm not a fan of plastic but these bins are great for moving. They hold a lot, and are easy to carry and pack. It took a bit of time searching to find enough of them second hand, and they may be mismatched but, if you can find them used, they are a great alternative to cardboard boxes.
3) Clothes for protection
I used clothes to protect all my valuables, instead of bubble wrap or newspaper, and I didn't break a single jar. You have to be a little more strategic with the way you fold the clothes but it worked out well for me.
4) Rent a car
If you can't fit everything you own in your bicycle basket, there's usually no way of getting around driving when you move. If it's possible, rent a more environmentally friendly car. I went on Expedia and rented a car through Hertz. I called Hertz in advance and told them about my waste free life and asked if they had a car that would suit my needs. They were really nice and set aside the Prius V for me. It was very spacious, had great gas mileage and has super low emissions. It was hybrid heaven on moving day.
If you can't quite fit your life into a car, you can try to find a truck that runs on bio-diesel. Maybe it won't be long before electric tucks become the norm.
Overall, my trip was smooth and didn't produce any new waste (minus the car). Mooji and I are settling into our new, zero waste home.