Easy Recycling Tips To Reduce Waste and Go Green 

If you are in the process of going green and creating an environmentally friendly home, then you are probably looking into recycling. 

One of the R’s of green living, I am sure you are familiar with the term “reduce, reuse, and recycle”. 

Recycling helps convert old products into new useful products. It is good for the environment since it sends less trash to landfills. It helps reduce air and water pollution. 

In your journey to go green, recycling is one of the steps to be more eco-friendly. 

For more steps and tips, check out the free eBook of over 100 going green tips

Read on to learn about recycling and ways to recycle. 

What Is Recycling?

Recycling is the process of turning old used materials into new ones. Through recycling and reusing, waste, energy and raw materials are saved.

With a growing population and the convenience of single-use packaging, natural resources are being depleted at an alarming rate. 

And a gut-wrenching statistic, currently less than 25% of waste is being recycled. The rest is being buried or incinerated in landfills. 

How absurd is that?!?

More than 70% of the waste we produce can be reused and recycled.

If you are decluttering or finished with something, check to see if it can be reused or recycled. Nearly everything you use in your everyday life can be recycled.  Make recycling a regular habit. 

Even if just half of you reading this recycled on a regular basis, it would reduce greenhouse emissions equivalent to taking 25 million cars off the road. 

Think about what it would be like if ALL OF YOU started recycling on a daily basis! 

The earth would love you! (and frankly so would I) 

Recycling helps reduce the exploitation of natural resources, saves money, and reduces pollution and waste.

Recycling is a process. It is more than just separating plastic bottles and aluminum cans out of the trash. It is a process that includes collecting recyclable materials, processing them into raw materials and then manufacturing the raw materials into new products. 

Recycling is important but because it does take resources to produce new materials always consider reducing and reusing before recycling. 

Benefits of Recycling

  • Reduces the amount of waste sent to landfills
  • Conserves natural resources such as timber, water, and minerals
  • Prevents pollution by reducing the need to collect new raw materials
  • Saves energy and money
  • Conserves valuable resources and cuts down on carbon emissions
  • Reduces greenhouse gas emissions
  • Stimulates the use of greener technologies
  • Prevents the loss of biodiversity

7 Ways To Recycle At Home 

Here are seven ways you can easily recycle to reduce waste:

1. Recycle Bins

recycling bins

Be sure to have designated holding bins for each type of recycled product, and place these bins in a convenient location in your home. 

I have one bin for paper, one for glass, and one for products that my local refuse company won’t pick up. I usually take this bin to a recycling center once or twice a month. 

Also, I have two recycling areas. One in my kitchen where I keep smaller bins that I can easily access when I need them. The other is a larger area in my laundry room where I can put larger items and fill up throughout the week. 

You can find bins specifically made for recycling or reuse items to fill up. I use old trashcans and bins that I found at second-hand stores. 

Not sure what to put in your recycling bins? 

Your local recycling center’s website should have a recycling sheet that shows you what can and can’t be recycled.  

2. E-Waste Recycling

Have batteries, cell phones, and electronics that you no longer need? 

You can take e-waste to a nearby free drop off center. Just search for local programs where you can take e-waste that will be recycled in a safe way. One way to find a certified e-waste recycler is by searching on E-Steward

3. Purchase Recycled Packaging

As more consumers are going green and becoming eco-friendly, many companies are now exploring ways to maximize recyclable and compostable packing materials. 

When you are shopping, purchase from companies that are using 100% sustainable packaging. If you can’t find many, go to the Sustainable Packaging Coalition. It is a great resource to find companies to support. 

If products you love aren’t using recyclable materials, reach out to them. Let them know your concerns. It doesn’t hurt to suggest a change. You have power as the consumer!

4. Grasscycling

You know that you can recycle plastic, paper, and cardboard boxes, but did you know that you can recycle grass clippings and leaves on your lawn?

Leave grass clippings on the lawn as fertilizer reduces the amount of yard trimmings disposed of in landfills. 

Mulch your leaves and grass clippings to use in your garden, around trees, and in the compost bin. 

5. Compost

Speaking of the compost bin, another way to recycle is to compost. 

Start a compost pile with yard trimmings and food scraps. The organic waste decomposes and becomes compost that you can use for your plants and in the garden. 

Be sure that you have the right container and put only decomposable items in. Learn more about composting at HowToCompost.org.

6. Recycle Water

Recycle water? What?

Yep!

Greywater is the relatively clean wastewater from baths, sinks, washing machines, and other kitchen appliances that can be used for other functions. 

You can make an investment and reconfigure your water pipes so that bathwater and sink water can be used for either flushing the toilet or for water in your yard. 

Or you can do it the easy way and place a bucket in your shower to collect water to use to flush the toilet. Or place a bucket under your sink to collect water from washing the dishes or when washing your hands. 

Just be sure you are using biodegradable soaps that are safe for your plants and soil. 

7. Rainwater Collection

rain water collection

Besides recycling your greywater, you can also collect rainwater. 

Rainwater harvesting is collecting the run-off and storage for later use. Mostly for use in your yard and garden. 

Rainwater collection systems can be as simple as collecting rain in a rain barrel or as elaborate as harvesting rainwater into large cisterns to supply your entire household demand.

If you want to install some rain barrels, check with your local environmental groups to see if they have supplies and classes on harvesting rainwater. 

Conclusion For Ways To Recycle To Reduce Waste

Recycling is one of the important steps to help the health of the planet. 

When you can, recycle. If there isn’t a center near you then do the best you can to live green. Think of ways you can reduce and reuse to cut down on waste. 

You can make a difference by recycling. On average, you can cut up to 1100 pounds of waste per year by recycling and reducing waste. 

Every step counts! 

Recirculate To Keep Waste Out Of Landfills For A Healthier Planet

How do you recycle? Do you have a recycling center in your home? Share in the comments. 

ways to recycle blog post