I am Dana Marie Perez, and this is how I started and continued to live a cost-effective zero waste lifestyle here in Cebu City, Philippines.
Last 2017, I saw a video circulating around Facebook about New Yorker Lauren Singer who is living a zero waste lifestyle for 5 years during that time. After watching the full video, I instantly got inspired to live the same way as well, but I didn’t do the shift right away. Why? My reasons were (1) it is impossible to do that in the city that I live in (Cebu City, PH) and (2) I can’t afford that lifestyle. I had all my reasons so I decided not to change how I live because I was totally convinced that it can’t be done.
As a self-proclaimed environmentalist, I, of course, did some initiatives. I refuse to use straws. I buy and use eco bags for my groceries. I segregate my trash. I don’t toss my trash anywhere. I prefer using paper bags. I strongly believed that was enough. But it wasn’t.
After a year of contemplating and avoiding the thought of living a zero waste lifestyle, finally, my Eureka moment happened to me one night when I was shopping at Carbon in Cebu City for the very first time. It is like a huge Farmers’ Market district where you can buy cheap and fresh vegetables, fruits, and many other things. I started feeling very heavy and uncomfortable everytime the sellers get 1 plastic bag to pack each item that I buy. When I finished shopping, I looked down at the huge plastic bag that I was holding that time, and I saw many small plastic bags packed inside. They were so many. I felt guilty all of the sudden, accepting all those plastic bags and knowing that I am going to throw all of them later when I get to the house. I looked around the marketplace and saw everyone doing the same thing as me. The realizations and the guilt all dawned on me. I thought;
‘This is how I, together with all the people in that place, contributed to the eternal waste being generated that very day.’
That moment changed me and my lifestyle forever. I decided in an instant to stop. I knew it would be hard and very uncomfortable, but if I want to really do my part in saving our environment, I would learn to compromise. That’s when I decided and started my journey in living a zero waste lifestyle.
I am writing and sharing this blog, to write and reach out to you. Each one of us contribute to the total trash being generated each and everyday even if we only throw 1 plastic per day. It is okay if our trash will decompose, but SOME won’t. They will live longer than you will and someday, if we, humans, will not change our behavior towards trash, we won’t have a sea full of fishes. We will have a sea full of plastics.
Starting a zero waste lifestyle is very, and I have to emphasize, very hard, especially here in Cebu City or in the province. Deciding to replace your plastic toothbrush means that you will need to wait for a couple of weeks to get a Bamboo-made toothbrush ordered online. Gradually, as I ease myself to this lifestyle, I found out that it is absolutely doable and very cost-effective! That is why, the second reason that I decided to write this blog is to help out my co-eco warriors, like you, to start easier than I had.
Here are my tips on how to live a cost-effective zero waste lifestyle. Since I live in Cebu, these tips are greatly helpful to Cebuanas and Cebuanos:
Disclaimer: This page is under construction. The links below are still now working.
- Self Care
I hope you enjoy and find this blog useful!
If you have comments, suggestions, or inquiries, feel free to connect with me in social media, send me an email at danamariegibeperez (at) gmail (dot) com, or drop a comment below!