There are two types of people in this world: those who recycle and those who don't. From a young age many of us became familiar with the phrase "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle" and now have it engraved in our minds. It was catchy, and to be honest, I feel like our younger selves probably recycled more than we do today. (creds to the catchy phrase).
Recycling is not only about making sure you throw your plastic bottles in the blue can outside your front door or trying to break down all the cardboard boxes at the end of the work day. Recycling can look like so many different things and is more prevalent in your every day life than you might think. Here are a few examples.
Composting! Composting is a form of recycling and is a great way to decrease erosion and keep organic materials out of landfills. For those of you who may not know, in simple terms, compositing is a technique used to feed and nourish soil. This is done by placing inedible parts of food, yard scraps (like grass, sticks, wood chips, etc.), and manures into a designated soil filled area. The purpose is to nourish the soil and the outcome is amazing! Composting has the ability to significantly reduce methane emissions, enhance water retention in soil, reduce the need for chemical fertilizers, etc. Read more about the benefits of composting here.
Reusing instead of replacing! Next time you're about to get rid of something and head to the store to replace it; stop an ask yourself if you're able to fix what is damaged instead of replacing it. People tend to always want to get their hands on "the next best thing" or the newest version of something in a store. Upcycling is a form of recycling that takes recycled products and turns them in to a new item that can be sold or used at the same or at a higher value. The process is good for both the environment and the economy! If you don't know where to start, start small. Try looking for household items that have turned in to dust collectors. Mason jars are a good example. Instead of recycling them, use them! Use them as glasses to drink out of, vases to put flowers in, storage bins for small items, etc. This is just one example, but the next best thing might already be right in front of you. Click here to learn more.
As I mentioned before, by recycling you are helping both the environment and the economy.
I'll start with a list of reasons why recycling is "good" for the environment (the word good seems so rudimentary so I put it in quotes for you to interpret it as you wish). For starters, recycling saves energy. Americans have the ability to save about 11.9 billion gallons of gasoline by recycling about 30% of their annual waste. Recycling also helps limit pollution. By using recycled materials to produce white paper, 74% less air pollution is released into the atmosphere compared to producing paper from virgin fibers. If you're interested in learning more about the impacts that recycling has on the environment click here.
Now that you are have the "adult version" of what reduce, reuse, and recycle means, I hope you leave with a small sense of urgency to get started. You have the ability to make an impact on the world through recycling - for both yourself and for those around you. Thank you for reading I hope you enjoyed! I encourage you to check out the site next week for another post :)
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