|be the E: Waste Less|
Did you know?
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Reduce your consumption by considering these questions before making purchases:
? Do I need to buy this? Why do I want this?
? How often will I use it? Is it reusable? Is it recyclable?
? Can I avoid the packaging? Or can the packing be recycled?
? Where was this product produced? Local is better.
? What are the implications of the entire Life Cycle of this product, from raw materials to disposal?
? Can I buy this secondhand or remanufactured?
? Is it available in recycled materials?
? Does it contain toxic substances?
? Can I borrow this item or share it with a friend?
? What are my alternatives?
In NYC, you can recycle all white and colored paper, newspapers, magazines and glossy paper, junk mail (windowed envelops ok), smoothed cardboard boxes, clean paper bags, phone books and other soft cover books, all metal cans, aluminum foil wrap and trays, metal hangers, glass bottles and jars, plastic bottles and jugs (#1 and #2 only), milk and juice cartons, and drink boxes.
Quick and Easy
· Invest in a water bottle, reusable cup, thermos, lunch container and/or shopping bag to reuse.You will save plastic and paper material from landfills and some locations will give you a discount. www.reusit.com
· Switch to paperless, online alternatives for delivery of bills and stop other junk mail. It creates 4 million tons of paper that is ultimately discarded. Avoid putting your name on mailing lists, stop delivery of your yellow pages, and register with the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) to reduce email and mail solicitations. http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/alerts/alt063.shtm
· Recycle and choose recycled product alternatives. As consumers demand more environmentally sound products, manufacturers will continue to meet that demand by producinghigh-quality recycled products and recover material for reuse.
· Avoid disposable items. Single-use products, particularly cleaning supplies and kitchenware, are often not readily biodegradable.
· Donate. One person’s trash is another person’s treasure. Donating keeps items out of landfills and provides opportunities for others.
· Avoid take-out food. The plastic and foam boxes are not biodegradable and release toxins as they sit in landfills. At the very least, tell the restaurant you don’t need the plastic silverware or napkins. Or BYO. Yes, bring your own container! Studies show that people are influenced to make change by observing what others are doing.
· Buy used, rent, or borrow when possible.About three billion new books are sold each year, requiring 400,000 trees to be chopped down. These books could have been purchased used, or borrowed from the library.
· Purchase items in bulk. You will pay up to 50% less and significantly reduce the amount of energy needed to transport all that extra packing waste to landfills and recycling facilities.
· SPEAK UP! Money talks! Ask for reduced or recyclable packaging everywhere you spend your money! Retailers, manufacturers, and restaurant owners want YOUR business!
· Do it yourself.Make your own cleaning supplies, lotion, shampoo, toothpaste, clothes, etc. http://simplemom.net/natural-beauty-clean-skin-teeth-and-lips
· Make an effort to repair worn goods rather than replacing them. For larger or electronic items and appliances, such as watches, computers, refrigerators, this option significantly reduces waste and allows you to extend the life of your products.
Story of Stuff: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9GorqroigqM
Great Pacific Garbage Patch on ABCNews: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uLrVCI4N67M
For more information:
Lower East Side Ecology Center:
The Ecology Center works toward a more sustainable New York City by providing community-based recycling and composting programs, developing local stewardship of green space, and increasing community awareness, involvement, and youth development through environmental education programs.
Grow NYC, Office of Recycling, Outreach, and Education:
OROE works to increase participation in New York City’s curbside recycling program using a grassroots, community-by-community strategy.
Recycling, Reuse, and Exchange:
Cell Phone Recycling Programs:
Materials for the Arts:
Helps artists realize their visions, provides students with a richer educational experience, and furnishes businesses with a simple and efficient way to enhance the cultural life of their city while promoting environmental awareness and reuse.
Styrofoam Out of Schools/ Cafeteria Culture
Learn how to reduce waste in your school’s cafeteria.
NRDC New York