In a world where being wasteful is status quo, the Muller family is breaking the norm.
OVS alum Jennifer Muller has always been passionate about the environment and has been taking large steps to help protect the earth. For the past 10 years, Ms. Muller has been showing her family alternatives to plastic. With help from her children — OVS senior Corbin and OVS sophomore Paige — and her partner, Tyson York, the Muller household has reduced their plastic usage to the bare minimum.
“We do our best to reduce our plastic consumption,” Ms. Muller said. “People do not realize how big of an impact that small switches can make.”
The Muller’s have switched all plastic bags to cloth and reusable ones, replaced plastic Tupperware with glass, only use reusable bottles, have replaced cellophane with reusable silicone covers, and much more.
On top of limiting plastic usage, their goal is to spread the message that change is possible.
“Our philosophy is to think globally, but act locally,” explained Ms. Muller. “We as individuals can’t change the world, but we can change our own little community here.”
Many people, especially youth, get overwhelmed and feel hopeless with the plastic and climate crisis, steering them away from making a change. The Muller’s switch from single use plastics to reusable options is proof that making a difference is possible, in reach and surprisingly simple.
Corbin originally believed that the transition would be difficult but soon found that limiting plastic usage is not half as hard as he expected it to be.
“I’ve gotten used to it and it’s normal to us,” said Corbin. “I believe that people have the ability to easily make the change over to reusable things.”
Mr. York was also surprised with the ease of the transition.
“Before I was with Jen, I wasn’t aware of the plastic problem,” said Mr. York. “Now I know the severity of this issue and have made the change and it was relatively simple. The hardest part is just taking the first step, once you start doing it and you put your foot in, it’s easy.”
Ms. Muller’s hope is that their switch to a sustainable household will inspire others to make the step and become passionate about the environment, just like Mr. York.
“And then it’s like the butterfly effect, you know,” Ms. Muller said. “We tell two people and those two people tell two people, it just expands from there.”
That message has certainly taken root in the Muller household, where Ms. Muller’s passion for the environment has spread to her children who are determined to continue the message.
“[My mom]inspires me in all aspects of life, but she is one of the main reasons why I’ve been trying to switch to lower waste,” said Paige.
Ms. Muller’s love for the earth is shared with her children, and they are determined to make a change.
“The earth is our home, it’s where we live,” said Paige. “It produces everything that we need to survive. And we’re killing it off slowly, it’s unfair to everyone and the earth.”
Sustainability is a crucial topic and the Muller’s love for the environment is making it known.
“Who doesn’t love the environment?” exclaimed Corbin. “It gives us humans so much and we give it nothing in return, it’s time for a change.”
Although it is impossible for one family to solve this environmental crisis, the Muller’s are determined to make as big of an impact as they can.
“We can’t change the world, but we can change our own little community,” said Ms. Muller. “That’s the biggest message, we can change what we have here, and that is a start towards global change.”