Taken from the book Every Monday Matters: 52 Ways To Make A Difference by Matthew Emerzian and Kelly Bozza
REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE
-The U.S. leads the industrialized world in waste generation, producing 245 million tons annually-4.5 pounds per person per day.
-2.5 million plastic bottles are thrown away every hour.
-Producing recycled white paper creates 74% less air pollutants, 35% less water pollutants, and 75% less process energy than producing paper from virgin fibers.
-9,000 curbside recycling programs exist
Only 2 man-made structures on Earth are large enough to be seen from outer space – the Great Wall of China and the Fresh Kills Landfill in New York.
1. Reduce what you use by purchasing larger sizes.
2. Reuse rather than throw away.
3. Contact your local waste management company and find out if they sort trash and recycle. If there isn’t a recycling program, create different containers in your home or business for glass, plastic, and paper.
4. Deliver your separated recyclables to a local recycling center once a month.
5. Buy recycled products and packaging.
If you haven’t seen the movie Wall-E, that is a great example of what could happen if we don’t start reducing, reusing, and recycling. They are key to protecting our resources and preserving our environment for future generations. As the holidays are coming up, how can you reduce the amount of packaging and gift wrap that you use this year? Typically, gift wrap is NOT recyclable. Buy decorated reusable gift boxes or reuse some that were given to you, for example. Reducing is the most powerful technique for eliminating waste because we don’t generate waste in the first place. If you can’t reduce, then at least reuse or recycle. In my community, we are so fortunate to have a curbside recycling program. It makes recycling so much easier. In fact, we fill 2 tubs every week with recyclables….reducing the amount of garbage bags we set out. How are you going to reduce, reuse, and/or recycle?