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Zero waste: HZAU in action

On the morning of March 4, 2017, a lecture titled “Zero Waste on Campus: Garbage Compost” was given by Luo Wen, a member of China Zero Waste Alliance, in HZAU. Many environmental protection collegiate associations attended the lecture including Bishui Environmental Protection Association(BEPA)from Huazhong University of Science and Technology, and Sanmu Sen Environmental Protection Association from Zhongnan University of Economics and Law and the members exchanged ideas.

What is zero waste? How to collect garbage and make garbage compost out of it? “Composting is the process of decomposition and fermentation of organic raw materials through large number of microorganisms,” Luo Wen said that the daily wastes such as fallen leaves, peel and skins can be used as raw materials of compost, and a piece of land shielded from rain and light is the best composting site. Besides, waste plastic barrels or wooden boxes can also be adapted and used as the compost containers. She suggested that the materials be broken into pieces to speed up the fermentation, the scrap be covered to stop gas from leaking, and warmth and humidity be maintained for higher temperature is helpful for sterilization and compost formation. Nevertheless, turning the compost regularly helps to increase the oxygen and speed up the process.

In response to the Zero Waste action, Green Association of HZAU held a DIY class designed to make newspaper baskets out of waste papers and solve the problem of storage.

Zhu Leijun from another university participated in the class and made a simple storage carton from waste paper. She said she came to HZAU with her school club and learned a lot about zero waste thanks to this event. “The class was fun and meaningful, you can reuse the wastes to make useful things so that garbage can be reduced,” said Zhu.

Previously, the seven-day zero-waste challenge organized by the Green Association of HZAU was carried out in full swing. Students are required to finish certain tasks which vary in 7 days. Missions were different every single day including having a vegetarian day, clearing the plate for three meals, DIY reusing waste items and so on. Zhang Yirui, the planner of the event, said, “The original intention is to raise students’ concern about zero waste because we are waste makers; this event will instill the idea of zero waste into our everyday life so that more people can get involved.” The challengers could just “punch the clock” by taking pictures of what they had done for 7 days running and would be awarded small gifts. They could protect the environment while experiencing the fun of zero waste.

Wang Qing who finished the 7-day challenge said, “Living a green life is very simple and can be easily realized by doing small things in our lives.” “The end of the 7-day challenge is a new start for a green life and perseverance is the key to it,” said the planner Zhang Yirui.

Tr.Li Yutong