No waste roadshow comes to Southland

The Rubbish Trip's Liam Prince and Hannah Blumhardt. PHOTO: Supplied

Self-proclaimed "no-waste nomads"  Hannah Blumhardt and Liam Prince are coming to Southland for the first time to present on easy, solutions-focused ways to reduce waste in the home.

Less wasteful living is having its moment in New Zealand. Ms Blumhardt and Mr Prince, originally from Wellington, started living waste free in 2015, but even over the course of the last six months they said interest in the lifestyle has exploded. 

They said increased reporting on the impact of waste, especially on the oceans, paired with increased awareness about the limitations of recycling meant more people in New Zealand were seeking ways to do their bit. Recent World Bank data said New Zealand was 10th most wasteful country per capita in the entire world when it came to urban waste.

"We get away with it because we've got a small population and so we're better at hiding our rubbish from ourselves, but in terms of the actual statistics of wastefulness and consumption, we're up there. We're well beyond the United States. They're 19th in the world and we're 10th," Ms Blumhardt said.

Following the surge of interest in trying to buck the trend, the two have been touring the country since last year as "The Rubbish Trip", sharing their tips and tricks to leave a lighter footprint.

The end goal was to make their presentation as relevant and easy as possible. 

"We're quite busy and we don't have a lot of time to faff around. We've developed a lot of quick, convenient ways to live this lifestyle," Ms Blumhardt said.

"In 90 minutes we'll cram this talk with as much tips and tricks as you like, and that's your time investment."

Easy tips they suggested included making the popular swaps to reuseable coffee cups, shopping bags, and straws to avoid single-use plastic, and to compost food scraps. Between 30-50% of waste came from food scraps, they said.

For people inclined to make the change, they said it wasn't just about reducing rubbish. Mr Prince said once they ditched the rubbish bin they were eating healthier and saving money to boot.

"This is not just about rubbish and it's not just focused on what goes in your bin, but it was just so much bigger. It really changed our perspective on the world, on society, the way that we consume things."

The Rubbish Trip tour dates — "Reducing our household rubbish: the zero waste approach"

Saturday, May 12: South Alive Community Park, Invercargill at 4pm.
Thursday, May 17: Halfmoon Bay School Library, Rakiura/Stewart Island at 7pm.
Tuesday, May 22: Riverton Environment Centre, Riverton at 7pm (event starts with a packaging-free potluck)
Thursday, May 24, DOC Fiordland Visitor Centre, Te Anau at 7pm.

"Zero Waste My Pantry! with The Rubbish Trip" — Sunday, May 13 at The Pantry, Invercargill at 4pm
For more information visit therubbishtrip.co.nz


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