Being careful about what you buy, consume, and throw away may not seem all that exciting even for the most committed environmental steward. But efficient daily practices and a little old fashioned common sense are good for the environment and your bottom line.
Use this checklist to see how many waste management and recycling practices you’ve implemented. Then make a plan of action to expand your efforts.
- Make waste reduction a priority in your home.
- Evaluate the waste you generate to identify and reduce your greatest sources of waste.
- Measure the volume or weight of the garbage you generate and set measurable reduction targets.
- Reject wasteful consumption by carefully considering what you need and buying products that last.
- Purchase products with minimal packaging or packaging that can be recycled, or buy in bulk.
- Use cloth napkins, cloth lunch bags, sponges/dish rags, reusable plates, and reusable coffee filters instead of paper alternatives.
- Repair or donate older or unwanted equipment and household goods to local charitable groups, rather than dispose of them.
- Purchase durable furniture and equipment or products made of recycled material to reduce waste from inferior products.
- Purchase recycled paper products, such as office paper, bathroom tissue, etc.
- Set up an area to collect recyclable of paper, glass, cardboard, aluminum, tin, and plastic.
- Compost outdoor wastes such as grass clippings, leaves, and kitchen waste (no meat or onions).