There are many small changes you can make to your daily and weekly routine that will help to positively impact your local community and the environment. Even if you cannot commit to the following suggestions 100% of the time, every little bit helps.
Rethink Your Wrapping Paper
It is fun to wrap your presents artfully, but the waste created by wrapping paper really adds up. Turn to the tips below to waste less, without sacrificing beautiful gifts:
- Buy recycled wrapping paper;
- Recycle all wrapping paper;
- Only cut what you need off of the roll;
- Use leftover scraps as padding for shipping packages;
- Reuse tissue paper and wrapping paper—crinkle if needed;
- Wrap with recycled materials, such as newspaper, comic books, magazines, or dated maps.
Source A Secondary Recycler
Your home garbage disposal company provides you with a recycling bin, but as you will see, not all recyclables can be placed in your recycling bin. There are many “numbered” plastics that may not be accepted by your disposal company. Look to see if any nearby secondary recycling centers accept your other plastics and your metal recyclables, such as scraps or leftover aluminum wire for anodizing. Don’t count out upcycling and donation opportunities for creative minds, who find your trash a great treasure. You might even find someone willing to come and pick up your unwanted items.
Rethink What Can Be Recycled
There is likely to be many things you could recycle, but may not know can be recycled. You may have to seek an item-specific recycler for some of these items. A few items often thrown out, but could be recycled include:
- Colored aluminum foil on candy wrappers
- Toilet paper rolls
- Cosmetic containers
- Smartphones and electronics
- Running shoes
- Ink cartridges
- CFL light bulbs
- DC and DVD cases
- Electrical cords
- Scrap metals
- Bring Your Own Bottle and Bags
Although plastic water bottles can be recycled, when you are out, you may find yourself tempted to just toss your bottle in the garbage. However, if you bring a reusable bottle, you won’t toss it. As an added bonus, you will spend less money on your bottled beverages. Another way to minimize plastic consumption is to bring your own bags when grocery shopping. Not only are cloth bags environmentally friendly, but they often hold more and are easier to carry.
Protect Your Waterways
Protect your local waterways by properly disposing of paint, oil, chemicals, and other liquids not designed to be poured down the drain.
Everyone can positively contribute to our local community by recycling, upcycling, and reducing our carbon footprint. As always, recycle all of your aluminum scraps!