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Erika Smith's avatar

Erika Smith

SF Teaching Zoo Zero Wasters

"Making a difference, one day at a time!"

Points Total

  • 0 Today
  • 0 This Week
  • 1,053 Total

Participant Impact

  • up to
    21
    disposable cups
    not sent to the landfill
  • up to
    1
    documentaries
    watched
  • up to
    200
    minutes
    spent learning
  • up to
    66
    plastic bottles
    not sent to the landfill
  • up to
    54
    plastic containers
    not sent to the landfill
  • up to
    61
    plastic straws
    not sent to the landfill
  • up to
    1
    waste audits
    conducted

Erika's Actions

Food

Use a Reusable Mug / Collapsible Cup

If possible, I will avoid sending 2 disposable cup(s) to the landfill per day by using a reusable mug or bringing my own collapsible cup.

COMPLETED 13
DAILY ACTIONS

Personal Care

Dam the Flow

I will use a menstrual cup and/or cloth pads.

Completed
One-Time Action

Pets

All Natural Pet Toys

I will give my pets natural alternatives to toys like femur bones and antlers, canvas, natural rubber, hemp, rope or cotton toys. Or make our own toys from recycled items found in our home!

Completed
One-Time Action

Pets

Invest in a Pooper-Scooper

I will swap out my single use plastic bags for a pooper-scooper.

Completed
One-Time Action

Lifestyle

Watch a Documentary

I will watch a documentary film about waste with family and friends and talk about what we learned.

Completed
One-Time Action

Lifestyle

Natural Fibers

When available, I will purchase clothing made with natural fibers, such as cotton, linen, or wool, rather than synthetic fibers.

Completed
One-Time Action

Lifestyle

Complete a Waste Audit

I will conduct a waste audit - including recyclables and compost - to understand how much waste I create and where I can reduce the most.

Completed
One-Time Action

Personal Care

Practice Sustainable Fashion

I will spend 15 minutes learning about the costs of fast fashion and begin trying to practice sustainable fashion in my own life.

Completed
One-Time Action

Personal Care

Pretty oh so Pretty

I will purchase beauty products that are packaged in sustainable packaging.

Completed
One-Time Action

Food

Use Reusable Containers

I will only use reusable containers instead of single-use plastic storage items (such as plastic wrap, single-use sandwich bags).

COMPLETED 13
DAILY ACTIONS

Food

Plant a Garden

I will plant a herb or vegetable garden in my home, workplace, dorm room, or community garden using as little plastic as possible.

Completed
One-Time Action

Community

Estimate My Plastic Consumption and Go #PlasticNeutral

I will visit the rePurpose website, complete the 3-minute plastic consumption calculator, and explore how I can reBalance my annual plastic footprint.

Completed
One-Time Action

Food

Skip the Straw

I will keep 2 plastic straw(s) out of the landfill per day by refusing straws or using my own glass/metal straw.

COMPLETED 13
DAILY ACTIONS

Family

Provide the Alternatives

I will provide daily plastic free alternatives (straws, water bottles, cuttlery, bar soap, bamboo toothbrushes, etc.) for my family to use.

COMPLETED 13
DAILY ACTIONS

Pets

Rubber Glove Pet Hair Removal

I will use a rubber glove to remove pet hair from clothes, carpets and furniture.

COMPLETED 4
DAILY ACTIONS

Pets

Homemade Pet Treats

I will prepare my own pet treats to avoid plastic packaging.

COMPLETED 6
DAILY ACTIONS

Lifestyle

Ditch Dryer Sheets

I will use wool dryer balls or another plastic-free alternative to dryer sheets to keep my clothes static-free.

COMPLETED 9
DAILY ACTIONS

Lifestyle

Travel Toiletries

If traveling, I will reuse my old travel tubes to refill with my soaps or only bring bar soaps with me in a TSA-approved reusable quart-sized bag.

Completed
One-Time Action

Lifestyle

Travel Eating

If traveling, I will bring my own snacks and meals in my own containers to avoid the waste of take-out containers.

Completed
One-Time Action

Lifestyle

Travel Smart

If traveling, I will bring my own plastic free items (water bottle, grocery bags, collapsible food containers, utensils, straws, etc.) with me.

Completed
One-Time Action

Lifestyle

Homemade Cleaners

I will make my own cleaning products at home.

Completed
One-Time Action

Community

Prevent Recycling Contamination

Contamination prevents what is recyclable from being recycled. I will spend 45 minutes researching which materials are accepted by local haulers or drop stations in my community and recycle only those items.

COMPLETED 4
DAILY ACTIONS

Community

Learn about the Harms of Plastic Production

Plastic production, not just disposal, pollutes communities and harms people. I will learn about the impacts of plastic production on humans, animals, communities, and the environment.

Completed
One-Time Action

Personal Care

Brusha Brusha Brusha

I will replace my plastic toothbrush with a bamboo toothbrush.

Completed
One-Time Action

Food

Use Reusable Water Bottles

I will use a reusable bottle and stop purchasing bottled water, saving 3 disposable plastic bottle(s) a day.

COMPLETED 12
DAILY ACTIONS

Food

Say No to Plastic Bags

If at all possible, I will not accept any disposable bags when making purchases, including produce bags.

COMPLETED 9
DAILY ACTIONS

Feed


  • Erika Smith's avatar
    Erika Smith 7/30/2021 4:41 AM
    I have really enjoyed this challenge! I feel like checking in daily keeps me accountable.  I'm brain storming today to see if I can come up with an idea to continue keeping track of my progress once the ecochallenge is over tomorrow!

  • Erika Smith's avatar
    Erika Smith 7/29/2021 11:26 AM
    They say it takes 28 days to create a habit...well, it took a lot less than that with the right motivation.  This was a great learning experience and I can confidently say our family will continue to practice making better decisions.  I'm excited to continue learning what I can do to leave future generations a better place to live! 

  • Erika Smith's avatar
    Erika Smith 7/28/2021 6:37 AM
    I decided to join this challenge because I have always known I could be making better decisions regarding how my actions affect the environment.  Quite honestly, I did not know where to start and this was the boost I needed.  I chose actions that were realistic and decided to incorporate them at home and at work.  It was very encouraging to see my family get onboard so quickly!
  • Reflection Question
    Food Use Reusable Water Bottles
    Using the links provided, investigate the bottling practices of water corporations. There have been many cases where the water rights of the local people have been violated or even completely disregarded when a corporation decides to bottle water from a particular water source. How can you advocate for those who have been harmed by this bottling process?

    Erika Smith's avatar
    Erika Smith 7/28/2021 6:16 AM
    As with everything else I have learned this month, there are things we can do that may seem small but could have an impact if we ALL took part.  We could opt to always use our reusable water bottle and use a water filter at home. We should make every effort to recycle all plastics. We can educate ourselves about organizations that are helping and continue to support them.
  • Reflection Question
    Lifestyle Travel Smart
    How can/did you prepare to be successful in this action? Did you engage in conversation with anyone about your new habit?

    Erika Smith's avatar
    Erika Smith 7/28/2021 6:04 AM
    Throughout the month I have included my family in conversations regarding what i have learned and what we need to change.  I was pleasantly surprised with how quickly everyone was willing to make the changes.  I guess we all realize our future and that of our children and grandchildren is really in our hands!
  • Reflection Question
    Lifestyle Travel Eating
    Was this action easy or difficult to do? How did it change your travel experience?

    Erika Smith's avatar
    Erika Smith 7/28/2021 5:55 AM
    We went on a road trip and decided to forgo the regular stops and brought along our own snacks in our containers.  We found that we saved for time and money and ended up eating healthier.
  • Reflection Question
    Personal Care Practice Sustainable Fashion
    How can you express your personality, creativity, and values in ways that don't require fast fashion or buying more clothes and accessories?

    Erika Smith's avatar
    Erika Smith 7/27/2021 6:41 AM
    I realized there's so much to learn! I would have never guessed that fast fashion was responsible for about 30% of the plastic pollution in our oceans! We can make a difference by buying second hand from charity shops and thrift stores.  It is also crucial that we let our purchases put pressure on brands to stop using harmful chemicals in their manufacturing processes by supporting sustainable brands which sell clothing and other products made from completely up-cycled materials.
  • Reflection Question
    Pets Rubber Glove Pet Hair Removal
    We know you want to - tell us about why your pet is so awesome!

    Erika Smith's avatar
    Erika Smith 7/27/2021 6:22 AM
    We have the most chill chocolate lab in the world.  His name is Dexter and he is a gentle giant.
  • Reflection Question
    Personal Care Pretty oh so Pretty
    How can you advocate for the importance of reducing packaging to the rest of your friends, family and larger community?

    Erika Smith's avatar
    Erika Smith 7/27/2021 6:13 AM
    I was shocked at how much of our trash came from packaging! I took a picture of our bin with all the trash and then a picture of our bin with everything but the packaging and showed it to the family.  It was incredible!
  • Reflection Question
    Lifestyle Watch a Documentary
    Which documentary did you choose to watch? What did you learn?

    Erika Smith's avatar
    Erika Smith 7/27/2021 6:10 AM
    We watched A Plastic Ocean.  Being from the Florida Keys and having spent so much time in the water with such magnificent creatures, this film hit close to home,  We felt kind of overwhelmed by the magnitude of the problem but we learned everyday actions can make a difference.  I think watching this film was very motivating.