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How Much Trash Do You Produce?

Posted by on Apr. 20, 2016 at 1:24 PM
  • 68 Replies
1 mom liked this

Have you ever considered how much trash you produce? Take control of your trash by adopting the motto: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. It’s an oldie but a goodie! 

Cafe Kristin

Try these tips: 

Know your community's recycling rules. Recycling properly -- by only putting items that are really recyclable in the bins, sorting as directed, washing out your containers before recycling them, etc. -- will help your community's recycling efforts run smoothly and stay cost-effective.

Recycle your electronics. Old keyboards, laptops, televisions, cell phones, electric toothbrushes, etc. should never get placed on the curb. Many stores participate in electronics recycling programs -- check with your local Best Buy, Office Depot, or other stores that sell similar products. The Earth911 site offers a directory of local electronics recycling centers and drives.

Recycle #5 plastics. Typical community recycling collections won't pick up #5 plastics -- which include things like yogurt cups, takeout containers, egg cartons, and many other plastics. But it's easy to find local recycling centers for these items. Check out thePreserve website to find locations near you. Most Whole Foods locations throughout the country also accept these plastics.

Know when to reuse. Some things can't be recycled, but they can be reused just as easily. Re-use styrofoam packing peanuts, for example, since these are hard to recycle and are not biodegradable.

Reinvent your trash. Turn your used coffee grinds into compost, reuse wrapping paper on other gifts, turn cardboard tubes from toilet paper and paper towel rolls into art projects for your kids, turn glass containers from jam into drinking glasses, convert CDs you no longer listen to into coasters.

Part with paper towels. Did you know that paper towel waste contributes 3,000 pounds of waste to the landfills in the U.S. every day? Try using reusable washcloths, rags, or towels to clean up spills or dry your hands.

Try composting. According to Grist Magazine, the average American throws away 4 pounds of trash a day, and half of that trash could be composted. You can turn your trash into a soil additive for gardening or fertilizer. Learn these basic steps in this easy guide

Plan to take it back. Instead of flushing or tossing it, take back any unused medications you have to keep them out of the water supply and soil. 

Bring your own bag. Why go with one-time use paper or plastic, when you can bring a reusable canvas tote? They fit easily in your purse and they’re machine washable!

Do you do any of these things already? Which ones are you going to try?

by on Apr. 20, 2016 at 1:24 PM
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Replies (1-10):
by Anonymous 1 on Apr. 20, 2016 at 1:26 PM
We fill our can every week and our recycling can every other week. We reuse everything we can.
by Ruby Member on Apr. 20, 2016 at 1:38 PM

We recycle a lot - it's expected here in the Pacific Northwest.  I use reusable bags (canvas) for the grocery store.  We have electronics recycling 3 times a year - that's where our old electronics go to die.  And batteries - they should NOT go in the trash.  I used to donate them to the high school (not sure what they used them for, but they wanted them), but they no longer do so.  Now the electronics recycling people take them.

And we buy as much as possible without excess packaging. 

by Anonymous 2 on Apr. 20, 2016 at 1:41 PM
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Not much- we recycle a lot. Though I think people assume recycling is much better than it actually is.
by 5/27/2018🤰🏽 on Apr. 20, 2016 at 1:42 PM
We recycle everything we can and its a lot.
by Ruby Member on Apr. 20, 2016 at 1:43 PM

We recycle more than we trash.

by MotherDucker on Apr. 20, 2016 at 1:44 PM
A lot. Recycling is not offered in my area
by Ruby Member on Apr. 20, 2016 at 1:45 PM

We usually put out 2 to 3 bags of trash a week.  We more than fill our recycle trash can.  Some weeks we have 2 recycle trash cans out there. 

by Platinum Member on Apr. 20, 2016 at 1:46 PM
1 mom liked this
As a family of six, we recycle, compost, and reuse as much as possible.
my church takes used plastic grocery bags (we try not to use/need them but it happens on occasion) and makes sleeping matts for the homeless. We put out one bag of landfill trash a week. We've invested in a locking trash can, and run our own trash to the dump monthly now.
by Silver Member on Apr. 20, 2016 at 1:53 PM
I will be honest my family of 5 with 2 Cats probably throw away two bags of trash a day. Generally the trash bags are completely full because of the way my trash can works. I wish we could recycle. We live in a town home community that doesn't have recycling. So for me to recycle I would either have to bring my recyclables to my mom's house 45 minutes away or take them to the plant which I believe is over an hour away. We use biodegradable kitty litter though. And I don't use paper towels. I buy the 12 pack of white washcloths from Walmart and they are kept in a small bed after they're used. Then like once a week I do one load of just them
by Ruby Member on Apr. 20, 2016 at 1:56 PM
We try nut to make a lot of trash. As a family of 11+, we only fill half of our trash can every week. We don't recycle because it's not offered, and there's no close recycling area to us. If we could, we likely wouldn't have to have trash service at all.

We use cloth towels, reusable menstrual products, cloth diapers, and burn a lot of our other trash on rare occasions. We feed our scraps to the rabbits, chickens, or dog. We compost what we don't feed them like coffee grounds, egg shells, etc... We really only need to toss the stuff we can't burn like glass, metal, rubber, and styrofoam.
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