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Brent Nelson's avatar

Brent Nelson

San Antonio Zoo Crew

Points Total

  • 0 Today
  • 0 This Week
  • 593 Total

Participant Impact

  • up to
    pieces of litter
    picked up
  • up to
    pieces of plastic cutlery
    not sent to the landfill

Brent's Actions


Keep My Community Clean

I will pick up 5 piece(s) of litter each day.



Use Reusable Utensils

I will keep 2 plastic cutlery out of the landfill per day by using my own reusable cutlery.



Invest in a Pooper-Scooper

I will swap out my single use plastic bags for a pooper-scooper.

One-Time Action

Personal Care

Lather Up

I will replace my soaps, shampoos, and conditions with either a bar or refillable option.

One-Time Action


Minimize Packaging

I will purchase food items with the least amount of packaging.



  • Brent Nelson's avatar
    Brent Nelson 7/16/2019 7:46 PM
    My wife and I went to eat at our favorite Indian restaurant the other day. I didn’t bother bringing my own utensils because they use reusable silverware. Unfortunately, we arrived after the lunch rush and there were people than plates. They gave us our water in single-use plastic cups with lids (thankfully no straws), but at least those are able to be recycled. They then ran out of silverware and just put out single use spoons. I cringed at that and debated not taking one, but my weakness for gajar halwa won out. :(

  • Brent Nelson's avatar
    Brent Nelson 7/12/2019 5:35 AM
    Making the Switch to Cloth Diapers
    One of the challenges in the Family category is to switch from single-use disposable diapers to cloth diapers if you have young children. My wife and I already are doing this with our son, so I thought I would share my experiences for anyone who might want to do the same.

    There are several different brands of cloth diapers, each one with a different design for how they work. They do save a lot of waste, but there are some considerations to keep in mind. Most of the brands are bulkier than disposable diapers since the extra cloth is meant to absorb, so outer clothes might not fit over them the same way. Since they are reusable, they will need to be cleaned...besides the extra work, you will be using extra water and electrical resources. And, unfortunately, they're not as convenient when travelling. I hate to admit, but there are times when disposable diapers just make more sense to use.

    Here are some of the brands I have used:
    G Diaper- These are the least bulky. There is a thin cloth exterior, with a thin plastic inner diaper that snaps in. This inner piece basically holds the single use liners that you insert. What is good about these liners is that they are fully biodegradable! If just wet, you can compost them. If soiled, you can peel them open and flush the inner absorbent liner and only have to throw away the soiled exterior. Downside is cost for having to replenish the liners. One of our doctors is a big fan of these and uses them for her kids.

    Thirsties and BumGenius have similar designs. They are bulkier and have 1-2 inner flaps that line the diaper and absorb. You don't need to buy extra liners or take anything apart, so they are easy to use. There are lots of snaps/buttons on the front so they are adjustable in size. The snaps also allow you to fold them up for easy storage. Downside is that they don't seal or absorb as well as others, so I've had some leaks.

    Charlie Banana is similar to the last two, but instead of the flap that sits in the diaper, there are cloth inserts that  you slip between the inner and outer layers of the diaper. These inserts are washable, and I feel like they absorb better than Thirsties. The downside is that there is extra work pulling them out and washing them individually as well as the diaper itself, as opposed to the single unit for the previous brands. This is the brand we primarily use.

    • Sam Peterson's avatar
      Sam Peterson 7/12/2019 3:30 PM
      This is awesome, Brent!  Huge kudos to you family for making this effort. Thank you for sharing your experience!

    • Bekky Muscher-Hodges's avatar
      Bekky Muscher-Hodges 7/12/2019 11:33 AM
      Wow!  You could write for Consumer Report!
      Great review!

  • Brent Nelson's avatar
    Brent Nelson 7/11/2019 10:46 AM
    Do you get points or Reflection Questions for "I already do this" actions? There's information for some that I want to share but not sure how since it just blocks off that entire category.

    • Sam Peterson's avatar
      Sam Peterson 7/11/2019 3:14 PM
      Feel free to share info on the feed, Brent.  You don't have to have a reflection question to post.  We'd love to hear your input!  Thanks!
  • Reflection Question
    Pets Invest in a Pooper-Scooper
    How are caring for your pet and caring for the environment connected for you?

    Brent Nelson's avatar
    Brent Nelson 7/10/2019 6:14 AM
    Using a pooper scooper instead of little baggies reduces waste, but I have yet to find a good disposal option for pet waste that diverts from the landfill.

    • Sam Peterson's avatar
      Sam Peterson 7/10/2019 8:24 AM
      I'm not a pet owner, but I gather that pet waste composting is becoming more common.  Maybe you can pick up tips from fellow participants.  :-)
  • Reflection Question
    Community Keep My Community Clean
    How does the act of picking up litter connect you more to your community?

    Brent Nelson's avatar
    Brent Nelson 7/10/2019 6:12 AM
    Picking up trash while doing my daily rounds in the zoo makes the area look so much better (and leaves less waste for birds to add to their nests as unintentional/inappropriate nesting material).
  • Reflection Question
    Personal Care Lather Up
    What are the economic and personal benefits of switching to bar soap/shampoo/conditioner or refillable bottle options?

    Brent Nelson's avatar
    Brent Nelson 7/10/2019 6:11 AM
    There is less packaging waste, but the downside of bar soap is that it leaves tough residue to clean, which makes liquid/bottled options more attractive.