When disaster strikes or there’s an emergency in your community, chances are the garbage man isn’t going to make his typical Tuesday stop. We already have a waste problem in our country, and if you’re a prepper focused on being prepared for the worst, you should have an understanding of how quickly waste can build up if an emergency ever occurs.
Focusing on waste prevention will make you more prepared while doing something good for the planet.
It’s important to know how to properly dispose of things as well as how to reuse and recycle other items. Some things you might typically throw away can actually be used more than once to cut back on waste production. Repurposing should already be in your wheelhouse, so shift your perspective on it to utilize your skills in waste prevention.
How exactly can focusing on waste prevention make you more prepared? Let’s cover a few of those reasons so you can start focusing on reducing your personal waste and getting creative with things you can reuse.
You’ll Be Self-Sustainable
Sustainability is a hot topic right now, but when you’re a prepper it takes on a few different meanings. It’s always good to give back to the planet and do something good for the environment. That’s why 64% of Americans are willing to pay more for sustainable products. But, sustainability is about more than the products you purchase.
Going zero waste can make you less dependent on things like big box stores and online ordering. Instead, you can focus on things like:
- Getting to know your neighbors
- Building a community
- Being a more conscious consumer
- Stocking up on shelf-stable food
- Minimizing packaging
You can also start to collect fresh water through sustainable solutions like creating an off-grid water delivery system. You won’t have to depend on your city or county because you can control your own water use without wasting a lot of it. Plus, you won’t have to stock up on hundreds of plastic water bottles!
Waste prevention doesn’t have to be a solo project. By getting your local prep community involved, you can rely on each other. Self-sustainability can involve other people, as long as you’re all willing to pitch in and help one another to reduce waste and use what you already have or can produce on your own.
You’ll Be More Resourceful
Along with self-sustainability, you’ll learn to be more resourceful when you shift your focus to waste prevention. Resourcefulness will come out of necessity. For example, it’s not just about finding your own water – it’s about using it proactively and efficiently. You can be more resourceful while cutting back on waste by doing things like:
- Taking shorter showers
- Growing your food
- Investing in quality furniture or making your own
- Using recyclable products
Choose to avoid things like fast fashion. Instead, invest in high-quality clothing or shop and thrift stores. Avoid single-use plastic. If you can’t grow your food, shop at local farmer’s markets rather than a big grocery store.
Resourcefulness should come naturally as a prepper. You already know what it takes to be prepared for disasters. You can apply some of those skills to making everyday changes toward sustainability.
You can also be more resourceful by reusing things that might otherwise be considered “trash”. Do you have some old clothes lying around with tears or things you won’t wear anymore? Use them for cleaning or donate them if they’re in good shape. Repurpose old furniture or rebuild pieces to turn them into something completely different. You’ll get to use your imagination and find creative, effective ways to use what you already have when you choose to be more resourceful.
You’ll Keep Yourself and Your Family Safe
Most of your prepping efforts are likely already in place to keep you and your family safe. But, focusing on waste prevention can boost your safety efforts in ways you might not have thought about before.
People tend to think of waste as garbage or food scraps. But, energy waste and water waste are big problems, too. You can cut back on wasted energy while keeping your family protected by closing up gaps around your home. Leak detection around your house is incredibly important. When there are leaks, it increases the risk of mold. That can contribute to respiratory infections, nausea, and wreak havoc on family members with conditions like asthma. Sealing up those leaks will not only keep your family healthier but will reduce energy waste and lower your overall energy consumption.
Finding ways to reduce waste can make your prepping efforts easier and more effective. You don’t have to be “zero-waste” to make a solid effort and make a difference while you’re at it. If you’re already prepping for a disaster or emergency, find ways to “tweak” what you do to reduce your waste production and increase your preparedness.