Gabriela Baeza is a young Mexican woman who in May will have gone for three years without generating any trash. During this time, she has changed her lifestyle radically, acquiring awareness about the environment and, starting with a series of daily activities, she has managed to disengage herself from many of society's consumption chains.
In an interview with EFE, she told about small techniques she has used to change her lifestyle, which led her to prepare a video titled "El Reto" (The challenge), in which she challenges consumerism by showing people that they can live without producing trash.
The video went viral on Facebook with 3.6 million views to date and it changed Gabriela's life.
She holds a degree in environmental sciences from Mexico's National Autonomous University (UNAM) and has had an interest in environmental protection since she was a little girl.
Gabriela says that the first technique for meeting the no-trash challenge is "to be very aware."
"That's indispensable, for you to know what's happening in the oceans, where your trash ends up, and all the damage it does to animals," she said.
Once that awareness is achieved, the next step is to change your consumption patterns, and Gabriela stopped buying any packaged food, putting her purchases of fresh food in non-plastic bags or containers to tote them home.
The next thing was to change everything about hygiene - buying only non-packaged soap, replacing her toothbrush with one made of bamboo and her toothpaste with baking soda and coconut oil.
"At first my family didn't like it, but little by little they accepted it," she said, laughing.
She also said that she uses vineger and baking soda as cleaning products around the house and she uses more durable plates that can be washed and reused.
Gabriela also takes her "toolkit" everywhere she goes and it includes "a bottle of water, my (bamboo) eating utensils and a container for anything that comes up," and she also recycles.
She said that she is now "in love" with this no-trash lifestyle, adding that she will always pursue it since the future of the planet is at stake and a systematic change in societies is under way which begins with becoming aware of a world problem, namely running out of natural resources, and trying to do something about it.