Monthly HighlightsSustainability Star

Sustainability Star of the Month : Viridiana Bello

3 Mins read

Tell us about yourself.

I’m a Mexican living abroad since 2014. I love photography and Lianne Moriarty’s books. And I have a podcast in Spanish for education awareness in Sustainability and Circular Economy. I’m from Cholula, Puebla, a small town where I used to buy fruits and vegetables directly from the farmers. I loved living there because, in a small town, you feel that connection with everyone, and you know who produced the things you eat, wear, or decorate your home.

I truly believe that we can always do better and good things for our environment and people.

What motivated you to shift to being eco-friendly?

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I studied Chemical Engineering and worked for five years for an energy company. During the time that I was working there, I had the drive to integrate environmental awareness into the business processes. However, my mindset was out of place in that industry then. Therefore, I studied business sustainability management and started a Spanish educational podcast. Because we can encourage people to change into a sustainable practice when we share knowledge and experience from different points of view. Besides, my main motivation is my two girls; I want them to experience that link I used to have in my childhood and learn that every choice we make could help the world be better.

The main things you do to be eco-friendly

There are many things that we can choose to be eco-friendly. For instance, one rule on the table is to serve the food you are willing to eat. Because according to the world economic forum, one-third of the food is wasted. Also, I buy the quantity that I know I need for the week to avoid food waste. Another thing we do is when we eat outside the home, we choose a la carte instead of going directly to the buffet.

I like repairing, so when I buy electronic devices, I try to choose the brands that offer a repair guarantee. For example, I had for years one set of headphones that I loved. However, I replaced them because I couldn’t find a store to repair the cushions. Since then, I have chosen brands that offer me this service. Your easiest eco-friendly swaps

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One habit that I have with my kids is to carry on a water bottle and don’t use straws. We exchange books with other families, and we buy second-hand books.

Another thing, we have replaced our plastic toothbrush with bamboo. And we use soap bars without plastic packaging.

I can teach my kids how to do the swaps by explaining them when we are in the store. For example, when we do the groceries, they help me to carry the reusable bags. When we select a product, I tell them to avoid plastic packaging and try to find a recyclable logo. In my case, I choose a make-up brand that offers cardboard packaging.

What makes it hard for you to be eco-friendly?

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Sometimes, the hard part is finding a market or store that offers another kind of product, or you need to visit different places to find all you need. Also, you like some product or brand, and it isn’t easy to find a suitable replacement.

Another struggle that I face is waste management. Depending on where you live, you could have easy access to segregate your waste, or the management facilities are designed for that, but it’s not in all cases.

These two are the principal problems I have faced when moving from different countries.

How do you plan on continuing your sustainability journey? What other aspects do you plan to change?

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Well, I’m trying to reduce my meat consumption and dairy products. I have added more plant-based recipes to our diet; one challenge is adapting my Mexican recipes to vegan ones.

In addition, I want to reduce our purchase of clothes and try to use more public transportation. One thing that I like about Emirates is that public transportation is clean and safe, so when I can I go for it.

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