Top 10 Ways to Reduce Household Waste
Whether you are trying to protect the environment, or you're just tired of carrying out all those bags of garbage, here are some useful tips.
- Product Packaging makes up the bulk of our trash. One of the easiest ways to reduce the amount of garbage you generate is to buy products that have minimal packaging. Products that are local require less packaging than those that come from farther away and require more protection. Also, try to find products with packaging that is easiest to recycle, like paper, glass or tin.
- Buy in Bulk! There are a number of items that can be purchased in bulk. Stop by the grocery store and load your cart with items like cleaners (use these to fill up your reusable containers), toilet paper, and even bulk meat. Also, natural food stores and some grocery stores sell dry foods such as cereals, grains and spices that enable you to stock your pantry without stocking the landfill with packaging.
- Compost! Buy or make a compost bin in your back yard, a place where you can put all your food leftovers, coffee grounds, egg shells, yard waste and other degradable natural materials. In no time you will have a fantastic natural fertilizer for your flower beds and gardens. Lacombe also has a community compost site for your grass clippings and garden tops at the recycle depot as well as grass bins in various locations through out Town.
- Take your own shopping bags for your purchases every time you go to the store. By using reusable plastic or cloth bags you are keeping thousands of plastic bags out of the landfill every year. Also, many grocery stores have recycle bins for all those plastic bags that you have collected over the years.
- Fresh Produce. One of the simpliest ways to reduce your household waste is to produce at least some of your own food. This doesn't mean raising cows in your backyard; simply planting a garden is good start. If the thought of being a green thumb scares you, there a variety of U-picks in the area as well as seasonal Farmer's Markets. Think of all the packaging you won't have to dispose of.
- Buy Less! When making purchases, consider the amount of time you will be using an item; if it's not for a short time, maybe consider renting it instead. Also, is it really necessary to buy the latest DVD or book that has been released? Why not borrow it from your library or friend.
- Drink Tap Water! Bottled drinks are a major contributor to the excess waste problem. Plastic water bottles actually take thousands of years to biodegrade; therefore they just take up space in the landfills and pollute the earth. Tap water is definitely the way to go.
- Donate! "Spring Cleaning" is something that can be done anytime of the year, and rather than just chucking all that excess stuff consider donating it. Places such as thrift stores, shelters, or local charities will accept your unwanted items. Just think of the people you are helping.
- Purchase Multiuse Items. By purchasing durable products that will last a long time, or items that can be reused for a different purpose, you don't have to worry about the waste. Avoid the use of disposable products such as razor blades, napkins, coffee filters and diapers.
- Recycle, Recycle, Recycle! Lacombe has a recycling depot that accepts cardboard, magazines, office and mixed paper, newspaper, tin cans, and all plastics. You will be amazed to see how much you can decrease your garbage simply by recycling. Don't forget about those electronics, ink cartridges and cell phones.