Rethink, Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Rethink, Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Everyone focuses on recycling and that is great, but it is the last and final "R" on the list.  That is the same as looking at recycling as the last resort.  If all else fails, then recycle.  If we focus on the other 4 R's, there will be less to deal with at the end. 

RETHINK

The first step to the Waste Reduction Hierarchy is to RETHINK.  Look at what is going into your recycling and garbage.  Can you make changes in your shopping that means some of those items never even get to your home?  About 30% of our garbage can be organic waste.  Is it possible to rethink food storage or preservation to reduce that waste?

REFUSE

Just refuse those extras.  Do you need it?  Can you borrow or rent it?  Will you use it more than once?  Just say NO!

REDUCE

Instead of individual fruit cups, buy on elarge container and divide it out for individual serving sizes.  This reduces packaging that you are bringing home.  This could apply to many items in our shopping cart.

REUSE

Reuse can mean to use an item more than once, but it can also mean to use it for something that it might not have been intended for.  There are creative ideas everywhere.  One of those items could be the answer you have been looking for.  It could also mean that someone else can use it.  Don't forget about thrift stores and the Share Sheds at the rural Transfer Stations.

recycle

Well, if none of the others worked, then I really hope that what you have left is recyclable.  Look back to the beginning to see if there were options you might have missed.  It gets easier.