Monthly Archives: August 2009


broomI’ve been doing a little housekeeping here at the Clean Bin Project blog.  You know, changing the sidebar to reflect the fact that we’ve actually finished our year, etc, etc.

Anyway, I came to realize that in our attempt to keep the top bar of our site clean and compact, some of the resources on our website might have been neglected.  Pages like Top Ten Tips and Do-It-Yourself recipes (hidden under the Project page) were previously accessible only on the right-hand sidebar – not very handy.

So here’s the official semi-permanent fix.  When you go to The Project, you will now see this little list of resource pages at the top:

Top Ten Tips – Our best ten ideas to start making your household waste-free

DIY – Recipes and links for everything from granola to laundry soap

Resources – Find answers to questions like “where can I recycle that?” or “where in Vancouver can I get bulk dish soap”

Archives – Just what it sounds like.  It makes it easier for people to go back and start at the start (July 1, 2008)


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Filed under Uncategorized

Reusable Produce and Bulk Bags

Ok, so I was raving about my favorite mesh produce bags the other day, but, lest you think I work for Moukisac or something (which I don’t), I thought I’d share a little of my research into other bulk and produce bags that are available out there You know, in case you decide to go the plastic-free route. . .

First off I should say I was pretty impressed to see how many North American manufacturers there were out there keeping it local.  Secondly, each bag has its own strengths and weaknesses (for example, the cotton bags are generally heavier than their synthetic counterparts, but then I’d assume they’d be biodegradable at the end of their life. . . .) but it’s fair to say they’re all better than using those flimsy ubiquitous plastic produce and bulk bags. Continue reading


Filed under reusable containers, soft plastics

Moukisacs and Moukinets

moukisac1I spent a year not buying “stuff”, so it may seem ironic that I’m about to shamelessly flog a material product, but I really do think it’s for the greater zero-waste good.

The first thing I bought after we finished our Clean Bin Project year was. . . well, it was actually a secondhand dress for my cousin’s wedding. . . . but, the second thing I bought was a set of Moukinets. They’re a fabulous reusable alternative to those flimsy plastic bulk and produce bags and you can use them for things like sprouting and making cheese too.

First off, they’re handmade in Vancouver, BC (points for local if you live in Canada or the US).

Second, you can put them in the washing machine (points for convenience and cleanliness).

Third, they have a drawstring, which is a feature come other bags I’ve seen are missing. You might think it doesn’t matter for veggies, but when you start buying oats and rice in them, you’ll remember that I said this and be thankful for the drawstring. Continue reading


Filed under plastic bags, reusable containers

Plastic Free Cereal

GrapeNuts“Oh look,” I said, casually perusing the supermarket yesterday.  “Grape-Nuts has new packaging.”

Silence fell upon the cereal aisle as Grant and I realized the implications of what I had just said and turned to each other at exactly the same moment with a look of terrible comprehension on our faces.

“Oh no, ” we said simultaneously.  He grabbed the box and opened the top flap.  Sure enough, nestled inside the new box was a plastic bag of cereal. Continue reading


Filed under food

Island Recycling and Plastic

tire planters

Tires reused as planters at the cabin

Island life is different than the mainland.  It’s slower – and cooler (at least it seems that way after last week’s scorching weather in Vancouver).  It makes you forget about things like technology. Which is why I haven’t written this blog in so long – I’m pretending to be an islander.

But there is one thing you can’t escape from, even here at a cabin in the woods and near the ocean.  Garbage. If anything, the amount of garbage is accentuated by the knowledge that we are on an island, and what comes onto the island must be ferried off. Continue reading


Filed under food waste, no waste on the road, soft plastics