Reduce, Re-use, Recycle: How exactly do you Reduce and Re-use?

how to reduce and recycle
January 15, 2019 Waste management

“Reduce, re-use, recycle”: a simple mantra that has been marketed to Australian’s to take responsibility for the disposal of their waste. Australian’s are well-educated when it comes to recycling– not everything goes into a skip bin or general waste. However, sometimes education isn’t enough. If people don’t care about the environment, they won’t bother separating recyclable items into the correct bin, as it’s seen as too much effort. Others recycle but place the recycled items in a plastic bag, defeating the purpose of separating recyclable items from general waste (where plastic should be).

Waste removal in Australia is quite challenging given the unique landscape and the dispersed population, which means a high recycling percentage is quite an achievement. The question now is, how exactly do you reduce and re-use?

Reduce

reduce your waste

Did you know that Australians waste up to 20% of what they buy? If you think about it, that’s around one in five grocery bags that you’ve purchased. It goes straight to a skip bin. Australians also throw enough food waste to fill 8,400 Olympic-size swimming pools! Narrowing it down to the household, 35% of the average household bin contains food waste.  With these staggering numbers, here are some tips on how you can reduce your purchase/consumption:

  • Prepare your list beforehand: Planning before you shop is a helpful tip to avoid buying items you do not need. Make sure to check your fridge and pantry for what you’ve and only list down what you need to buy. It also helps to already plan out your meals for the entire week.
  • Maximise what you have in stock: Be creative with your meals and explore food that you can use more than once. Do you have overripe fruits? Turn them into smoothies or cakes and muffins. Bones, meat scraps and vegetables can be turned into flavourful stocks.
  • Sleep on it: Before buying clothes, a new bag or a new pair of shoes, try and sleep on it. Really think about if this is something that you badly need. Around 27 kilograms of textiles are bought by Australians every year. What’s shocking is close to 23 kilograms are discarded into landfills, and two-thirds of these discards are made of synthetic fibres. This type of fabric may never breakdown. Re-visit your (overflowing) closet, you might be surprised with how much you have in there that you can still wear.
  • Rethink your consumption: Be a smart consumer and avoid single-use plastic. If you really think about it, when you buy bottled water, it adds to the hassle because you have to find a bin to throw it in (and why would you pay for water when it’s free, just buy a reusable bottle). Save yourself money and save the environment by 1. buying a reusable bottle (stainless steel if you can) and 2. taking it with you everywhere you go.

Re-Use

Re-using items not only help save the environment, but it can also help you save money too. Re-using also lets you be creative and resourceful in thinking of ways on how to use your items again. Here are some easy ideas on how to re-use:

  • Go op shopping: Looking for an enjoyable and adventurous way to reduce your environmental impact? Go to op shops with a friend! Do it on a weekend and be amazed by the quirky and unique items you can find. You can also donate old toys, clothes, or even homewares to these shops (but be mindful that donating your clothes doesn’t solve the problem and means you can buy more- Charities are paying $13 million a year to send unusable donations to landfill).
  • Upcycle it!: According to WWF Australia, over 90% of the plastic and metal components in mobile phones and batteries can be re-used in new products.
  • Bring your own: The easiest way to practice re-using is to bring your own drinking bottle, you can actually do it right now! Did you know that a huge chunk of waste in landfills is single-use plastic bottles? There’s a wide array of available re-usable drinking bottle from stainless steel ones to BPA-free bottles.

Newcastle Skips has all your skip bins needs!

Ready to make your move towards becoming more environmentally-friendly? Newcastle Skip Bins is the perfect choice for you. We have different skip bin sizes from a mini skip bin that can fit almost anywhere to a large skip bin that’s perfect for large residential rubbish removal. Keep scrolling our website and book the perfect skip bin hire for your needs. You may also get in touch with our expert customer representative on 0414 375 375 for more details.

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