Waste, and how we choose to handle it, greatly affects our environment, our quality of life, and our country’s future.
When you reduce the amount of waste you generate, less new products have to be made. Making a new product requires a lot of materials and energy – raw materials must be extracted from the earth, and the product must be fabricated then transported to wherever it will be sold. Learn more facts on why you should reduce, reuse and recycle.
- Precycle. Purchase products in packaging that can be reused or recycled.
- Use reusable bags. Recycle used plastic bags at a nearby grocery store.
- If disposable dinnerware is necessary, purchase recyclable or biodegradable products.
- No Styrofoam! It is not recyclable and does not breakdown in the landfill.
- Avoid single-serve containers. Buy beverages in large recyclable bottles and pour into reusable containers.
- Bring your own utensils and cup to work instead of using disposable items.
- Drink tap water instead of bottled water. It’s safe, cheaper and tastes great!
- Say NO to junk mail. Easily cancel unwanted catalogs at catalogchoice.org
- Go paperless. Most information can be obtained (and paid for) online.
- Only buy what you need and use all of what you buy.
Reusing gives old products new life with little or no energy used for repurposing. Recycling requires less energy than making new products; however, it still requires substantial energy. Learn more facts on why you should reduce, reuse and recycle.
- Buy and sell used. Thrift stores and online apps are increasingly popular for used furniture, toys, etc.
- Donate unwanted items to thrift stores, churches and schools.
- Borrow, rent or share items used infrequently i.e. party decor, tools, etc.
- Refurbish or re-purpose furniture.
- Check for Free Re-Usable Products including paint, fertilizers, cleaning products and more.
- If it’s broke, fix it… or take it to someone who can.
- Use reusable over disposable whenever possible – dishes, bags, etc.
Recycling creates a closed-loop system where unwanted products go back to manufacturers for use in new products. Much more can be recycled curbside and at the City’s Recycling Center than what is being recycled! Learn more facts on why you should reduce, reuse and recycle.
- Remove food, sauces and juices from recyclables.
- Save space – flatten boxes, crush cans and plastic bottles. Do not break glass as it jams equipment.
- Detach unlike materials. Remove metal lids from glass jars, liners from cereal boxes, foil from yogurt tubs, etc. Although recyclable, facility equipment cannot properly separate the materials, therefore they are considered contaminated and are taken to the landfill. Here’s an inside look at the sorting process.
- Recycle it, if it’s recyclable. If you aren’t sure, check the items accepted curbside and at the recycling center or send an email to Is it Recyclable. The recycling facility and the landfill both have disposal fees. When non-recyclable items are placed in the recycling cart, they have to be transported from the recycling facility to the landfill, resulting in two disposal fees.
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