Tune in Daily at 5PM for the entire month
of April and watch Alison with special guests.
They will share tips, tricks and information
on reducing waste and impact.

30 Days, Zer0 Waste, Zer0 Impact
Watch live streaming video from 30zerozero at livestream.com

Hey Metro Vancouver!

I'm Alison Richards and for the next 30 days, starting on April 1st, 2011 I'll be monitoring and documenting my actions and activities while striving to live with the least amount of impact and creating zero waste. This interactive web site is meant to serve as a portal for your participation. Chat with me during my daily 5PM web cast or post your tips and suggestions on the Facebook page. I hope to create a ripple of change through awareness and focusing on making one small change each day.


Click Pledge to Become a 30 Zer0 Zer0 Hero!

Day Seventeen - April 17th, 2011

Just got back from Kwantlen College in Richmond where I met Timo Rissanen an expert on sustainable and zero waste fashion. He was in Vancouver to teach a weekend workshop to our Fashion and Design students. His book Shaping Sustainable Fashion co-authored with Alison Gwilt focuses on Changing the Way We Make and Use Clothes. I learned some fabulous tips from Timo and got the startling truth about North Americans obsession with shopping. I've made a conscious effort this past few years to limit my wardrobe, re-use and re-purpose older garments and to launder my things as little as possible. I did my spring wardrobe spree at Value Village since buying second hand items is 100% waste free! Trust me, you can find some very cool threads in second hand stores.

See you Live @ 5 today.

Put your clothes in the freezer when they start to smell "gamey". After 24 hours the little critters that were munching on the dead skin (mites etc) will be gone and the garment will smell fresher. In winter (cold climates) you can hang things outside or bury them in the snow to freshen them up. Wind and sun are the best natural cleaners but if you do have to wash, use cold water and a natural soap. Washing in hot water, bleach, detergent and tumble dryers do more damage to clothing than anything else. Timo washes his jeans twice a year.


Challenge your friends to be 30 Zer0 Zer0 Heroes!

Visit our Facebook page and share your ideas on how to make change to improve our planet. You can join the Zero Waste Challenge by following the Pledge link. Don't forget to Challenge your friends by send them a link to become Zero Waste Heroes.

City woman explores
zero-waste lifestyle

By Jennifer Moreau,
Burnaby Now April 9, 2011



Dear Alison,

One of the courses I teach at the university is a Global Affairs class, and I did a lecture on the benefits of switching over to LED bulbs. After having blabbed on for two hours, I left the school thinking to myself, hmmmmm..., maybe I should switch over to LEDs. So off I swanned to one of the big electronic stores in Shinjuku. (Support your "neighbourhood"!)

I asked where I would be able to find this particular kind of bulb and was led to a very large display case. I took one look at the prices and the next thing I know, I was lying on the floor blinking up at a sea of clerk-faces asking me if I was alright.

"ALRIGHT?! Are you kidding me?! FORTY BUCKS FOR A LIGHT BULB?! Of course I'm not ALRIGHT!"
"But sir, these bulbs will last for 10,000 hours. You might never have to buy another light bulb again!"
"Bloody right I won't, because I won't be able to afford the rent, and will have to live in a cardboard box at the station, and you DON'T NEED BULBS IN A BOX!"
"Really, sir. They pay for themselves very quickly. You'll notice a big difference in your electricity bill after just one month!"

After I had composed myself, I asked him to explain all the differences, and my Japanese, even after 24 years living here, is atrocious, so I really had no idea what he was so cheerfully nattering on about. I eventually stopped listening, but kept nodding and pretending like I understood. After his mini lecture it came time to choose the bulb I wanted. He gestured to a display of lit-up lights, like he was a car salesman showing me the latest model Jag.

"Oh no, no, no, no,no. Sorry, sorry, sorry. This won't do. What the hell colour is this? This would look faaaaaabulous sparkling out of the Milky Way, or in a baseball stadium for a night game. In fact, I'm sure you can probably see this baby from space it's so bright! Look at me. I am a pasty-faced, middle-aged, gay white man. My people don't do this kind of lighting. It's harsh. Unflattering. Makes the lines and dark circles more noticeable. We line our lampshades with pink silk to make us look more attractive!
You are Asian, with bee-yoooooo-tiful Asian skin that looks good under ANY kind of light. I wouldn't be able to live with this. It offends my sensibilities. It hurts my eyes. Don't you have anything warmer? Softer? Something in a peach or pink tone? SOMETHING THAT WILL TAKES YEARS OFF MY FACE AND MAKE ME LOOK PRETTY??!!!" He was probably thinking, "Whoa, dude! These babies are good, but they ain't magic light bulbs!" But being Japanese, and oh-so-polite and efficient (I LOVE LIVING HERE!!!), he led me to another display case, did his car salesman gesture and VOILA! softer and warmer peach-tone bulbs!!!

"Oh my heavens", I purred with tears of joy in my eyes! "These are perfect! Lovely! See how much BETTER I look?! I'll take them!"

Three hundred dollars later, I left the store with a teensy-weensy bag and excitedly made my way home. I immediately went to the ENORMOUS fake Tiffany floor lamp in the morning room, removed the old incandescent bulbs, screwed in the LEDS, and turned them on. Total and utter disappointment! Sure, my skin tones looked marvelous, but they just didn't have that incandescent look! Instead of a gorgeous, floral glow shining out filling the room, there were three spots of light, and the rest of the shade was dark, dead patches. Oh well, better to have a dark, dead lampshade than a dark, dead planet. I got used to them after a few days, the electricity bill is noticeably lower, and if it's for the good of Mother Earth, then I'll just suck it up and deal!!!


Tokyo Trash Talk

from my cousin

Brent Fialka



April 2011

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copyright © 30 Zer0 Zer0 - Alison Richards April 2011