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About Polly Barks

How to start a carbon positive, zero waste blog -

Hey! I’m Polly and I’m here to break down the big, overwhelming ideas of zero waste and living sustainably into smaller, more actionable pieces. Because if sustainability is hard to understand, how can it be accessible to those who need it most?

Let’s make sustainability less of an idealized lifestyle and more of a holistic look at how we interact with our environment. Here’s the thing: zero waste is more than a plastic bag!

From choosing a few zero waste swaps to changing your diet to starting a zero waste group, there are so many ways to live a more sustainable life that don’t involve stuffing a year of physical waste in a mason jar.

About Polly Barks

  • Zero waste educator based in Lafayette, IN.
  • Founded Barks Consulting to help small businesses and other zero waste educators expand their influence.
  • Passionate about ripping up lawns and making gardens.
  • Founder of the Beyond the Plastic Bag Zero Waste Virtual Summit, a 3-day online event which welcomed over 500 attendees in the first year!

I started leading a full zero-waste lifestyle in 2015 after experiencing life in an Indianapolis community where affluent trash gets left behind. Living in a food desert with a strict budget and lack of infrastructure meant many of my neighbors rarely even saw fresh produce.

After an early morning wait for the bus where styrofoam containers and plastic bags swirled around my shins, I realized I needed to do something. I discovered zero waste and began to explore how it could be both high-impact and accessible, regardless of income, background, or location.

Since going zero waste, I’ve combined my education background with my passion for sustainability to become a zero waste educator.

I try to make that education as open and equitable as possible – because I’ve lived first-hand knowing how hard it is to think about climate change when you’re worrying about paying rent.

Since 2017 I’ve spread that message everywhere from food banks to local libraries to nationally-recognized universities. (And online, too, of course!)

Questions? I probably have an answer. Get in touch here.