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We are living in a consumerist throwaway culture where household decisions, from diet, to transport, to recreational spending and every decisions are estimated to make up 60-70% of global GHG  emissions. While we can’t place the blame and burden of change on the consumer, it is clear that we all have a large role to play in being responsible with our everyday spending choices and aim to minimize waste wherever we can. With 93% of people in the EU viewing climate change as a serious issue, it is clear that people want to do what they can, but for many, making changes can be daunting as they feel insignificant in the face and scale of the issue.

The USELESS project’s aim is clear: its facilitators want to help people use less and feel less “useless” in the project. It was set-up by two friends, Geraldine Carton and Taz Kelleher back in November 2018 in Dublin, Ireland.

The USELESS project helps people take steps toward a more sustainable living through tutorials, workshops, tips on food waste prevention, reuse, second-hand and upcycled fashion for individuals, schools or businesses. They now run events (including a monthly flea market!), workshops and provide a wide range of education and awareness-raising resources from DIY upcycling videos and sewing tutorials, to batch-cooking recipes, climate justice deep-dives and listicles of their favorite sustainable brands in Ireland and beyond.

“We’re not calling for a small amount of people to be perfectly zero-waste or “100% sustainable”. What we want to see is a huge amount of people making incremental positive changes in whatever way they can. So, if you’re someone who feels useless – just start small. Keep it simple. Just use less.”

Since Taz and Geraldine began in 2018, the USELESS project has gone on to become one of the biggest sustainability and low waste focused social media pages in Ireland. As of the summer of 2022, the USELESS project has amassed over 45,000 followers online and they hold weekly sold-out events where learners get hands-on solving waste problems and getting in touch with their creative sides at their workshops.

Website link for the good practice:

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