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reducing trash at home

posted 8 years 3 months ago
We have 6 people in our household. We generate a lot of trash. In order to reduce it we have built a compost bin for food scraps and we do recycle, but we still have a large amount of trash. What tips do you have for reducing our trash output?

posted 8 years 3 months ago
I think the biggest thing for me is trying not to bring the excess stuff into my house in the first place. We don't get junk mail or store catalogues because we just look them up online. I try to use my recyclable shopping totes as much as possible (of course there are times I forget but then I try to use the plastic bags for another purpose!) and things like that. I think that's key, because once it enters the home then you're just looking for ways to get rid of it anyway!

posted 8 years 3 months ago
The biggest difference in our home was once we stopped eating processed food. I mean, sure, even some healthful foods have been processed to an extent and will come in packaging that needs to go in the trash.. but the majority of our foods don't come in any sort of packaging and when it needs to, we do our best to buy biodegradable. We can't always, of course, but we do our best and it's a massive difference from before we ate this way. We generate very little trash now.. especially considering we don't buy a lot of "stuff" in general. The most garbage we produce is from food and food can be composted.

posted 8 years 3 months ago
Great point there about the processed foods, @JosieP - it's incredible just how much packaging some food items have, and then it just all gets thrown out in the trash. I try to recycle as much of it as possible (cardboard boxes from cereal, for instance) but a lot of it doesn't meet the criteria for being recyclable here. All the more reason to try and eliminate more and more processed things!

posted 8 years 3 months ago
I started recycling in my area since the city I live in started curb pick up for it. I was actually surprised how much trash that could be recycled. I would only have about two bags of garbage and I would have an overflow of recyclables. Just about everything comes in recyclable packaging and the city was taking everything. I think if there are things that are not recyclable that are going in your trash maybe you find another use for them such as making crafts with kids. If you have items that could be sold or donated instead of throwing away, that may help you also. Not using paper plates or other disposable items, would help limit the amount of trash.

posted 8 years 3 months ago
Here are some tips I can give you guys, based from my experience:

  • Although using cloth diapers is the best for the environment, we all know how hard it can be to wash them especially for working mommies. So as much as you can, try to make your kid wear cloth diapers in the day, specifically after they poop so you won't have to spend so much time washing the cloth diapers. And at night, you can use the disposable ones for undisrupted sleep. This way, you help in saving the planet.
  • Use reusable eco-bags when you do your grocery. When we do forget to bring those, we ask for the cardboard boxes instead of the plastic bags.
  • Separate your garbage: one for biodegradable and one for non-biodegradable. This way, it's easier to know which one should be left for the garbage man to collect and which one can just be buried in your backyard.
  • Bring your kid's own plates and spoons on restaurants or fast food chains. You can save some plastic usage this way.

Good luck!

posted 8 years 2 weeks ago
Thanks morgoodie and missiemouse. That was exactly the kind of trash reduction tips I was looking for.

posted 7 years 5 months ago
You can also bring your own boxes to the super market for vegetables, cheese, meat etc. this is also a great way to reduce trash!

posted 7 years 4 months ago
how about you try recycling your plastics and glass bottles. You can turn your plastic bottles into containers or plant boxes..

posted 6 years 11 months ago
I am a true fan of 0 waste movement. Recycling is a good way to help the planet, but there is nothing better than NOT polluting the environment at all. First of all, get rid of the plastic. Buy the glass jars and cups. I even have my own one to get the morning coffee somewhere. I always ask them not to waste the paper/plastic one, but use mine! I got those weird looks at first, but then people started asking why. After the explanation the weird looks disappeared and I saw them respecting my behaviour. We even have the 0 waste shops here. You bring your own thing (probably made of glass) in order to take the products out. If you do not have anything on you, you can always borrow one there and give it back next time. Sharing is caring! There 2 of us living in a flat, but we get rid of a trash once in 2 weeks. You have a lot sources on that. But my recommendation is to use as natural products as possible and make as much as you can handmade. No chemicals!! Vinegar is the best solution that can help you out in cleaning the house

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