The 5 Re's of Recycling
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Rebuy & Rethink
Over the past 35 years, the amount of waste each person produces each day has nearly doubled from 2.7 to 4.6 pounds. The most effective way to stop this trend is to prevent waste in the first place by practicing source reduction.
- Source Reduction is defined as any change in the design, manufacture, purchase, or use of materials or products (including packaging) to reduce their amount or toxicity before they become municipal solid waste.
- Because source reduction actually prevents the generation of waste in the first place, it is the most preferable method of waste management and goes a long way toward protecting the environment. Not buying anything that you don’t need and making sure that what you do purchase is durable, long lasting and as free of toxics as possible are ways of practicing source reduction. Print and copy on both sides of paper, use bulletin boards, e-mail, routing slips and word of mouth to help reduce paper use.
Have you ever been to a garage sale, a thrift store, an auction, or even an antique mall? Well if you answered yes to any of these you have in one way benefited your environment and community by reusing items which otherwise would have landed in your local landfill.
- Reduce means that you participate in the redistribution process of materials from those who no longer need them to those who can still find use in them. Another way to practice reducing is to use a product more than once, either for the same purpose or for a different purpose. When possible, reusing is preferable to recycling because the item does not need to be reprocessed before it can be used again. By eliminating material processing we conserve valuable natural resources, reduce the amount of water and air pollution and green house gases, and provide a means for getting materials to disadvantaged people and organizations. Shopping at State Surplus Property is an excellent way to practice reusing office supplies, office equipment, computers, vehicles, furniture and much more.
Contact the State Surplus office for more details.
Recycling turns materials that would otherwise become waste into valuable resources and generates a host of environmental, financial, and social benefits. After collection, materials are separated and sent to facilities that can process them into new materials or products.
Buy recycled! Buying recycled content products and materials help to ‘Close the Loop”, creating a demand for materials recovered from recycling efforts. By buying recycled you help to divert reusable materials away from landfill, reducing waste disposal costs and conserving resources.
Think Again! Next time you go to throw something in your garbage can take a minute and think about other possibilities other than adding it to your local landfill. Can it be reused either by you or someone else? Can it be recycled? If so when you go to replace it remember to think about replacing it with a product made from recycled materials.