What is the Low Impact Movement? + How You Can Join
You may have heard of the zero waste movement and seen images of a trash jar – yes, a jar that contains an entire year’s worth of someone’s trash. While this is a noble cause, it doesn’t tell the whole story of a person’s environmental footprint. Enter the low impact movement – zero waste’s new, more holistic counterpart.
What is the Low Impact Movement?
To understand the low impact movement, we must first understand the zero waste movement. People who live a zero-waste lifestyle try to lower their environmental impact by avoiding all single-use products, or at least as much as possible. It focuses on switching over to reusable products, avoiding packaging, consuming less, and composting and recycling where needed. Ultimately, the goal of zero waste is to produce no trash.
The low impact movement was created by Sustainably Vegan, a blog by Immy Lucas. This movement looks at more than just waste, but rather takes a holistic look at your impact on the planet. It requires you to look at how you can reduce your total environmental impact.
So, while people living a low impact lifestyle do aim to produce less waste, they might also make DIYs, eat plant-based meals, shop secondhand, shop ethically and locally, or involve themselves with the local government to promote environmental protection. Importantly, the low impact movement also digs into bigger issues that impact the planet and people everywhere, including climate justice, social justice, and intersectional environmentalism.
How to Join the Low Impact Movement
Ready to get started? Here are four ways to join the low impact movement.
1. Reduce waste by eliminating the big four
It can be hard to know where to start! Try eliminating waste by starting with the big four offenders that cause the most single-use trash: plastic bags, water bottles, straws, and coffee cups. Look for reusable swaps and make it your mission to bring your own reusables rather than getting the single-use versions.
2. Change up your shopping habits
Your business is much more appreciated at local or ethical stores than retail giants like Amazon. Look for online shops like Package Free that offer more sustainable shipping and products, or aim to try out local spots! Secondhand is also great. As you shop, try to find products without plastic packaging – or better yet, no packaging at all!
3. Try a DIY
Making something from what you’ve already got will always be the most sustainable choice. Whether you make a cleanser, face mask, or hair tie – it’s almost always better than purchasing new! Check out the blog for lots of DIY ideas.
4. Do something bigger
Thinking of your larger community, city, and planet is the final step. Can you involved yourself in your local government and lobby for environmental protections? Perhaps research climate justice or learn about intersectional environmentalism. Make your impact bigger than yourself.
What aspects of the low impact movement can you bring into your life today? Let me know what change you’ll make in the comments below!
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