Many recyclable items are mainly used for convenience, and although it is better to recycle these items than send them to a landfill with regular garbage, there is a limit to the amount of recycles that can be reused. There are ways that you can limit the amount of recyclables that you use, which can result in a cleaner environment and a healthier you. These include:
Reusing water bottles.
Millions of water bottles are thrown into recycling bins when they could be reused. Although some areas may have issues with their water supply, most areas in the U.S. have drinking water that is safe to drink directly from the faucet, or can be purified of contaminants through the use of a simple water filter. Convenience is the main appeal of bottled water, and it requires very little effort to refill water bottles and place them in the refrigerator at home or at work.
Plastic grocery bags.
You see them adorning trees or swirling through the air and dancing in the wind, yet their effect is anything but magical. They clog sewers and waterways, and although many can be recycled, millions more help to fill landfills to capacity. While it's nice to have a small amount of plastic bags handy for such tasks as cleaning up after your dog, they tend to multiply far beyond your ability to reuse them.
Reusable grocery bags are available at most grocery stores at a very modest price. While you cannot change the behavior of other shoppers, you can do your part to inhibit the spread of plastic bags, and look socially conscious and trendy while doing so.
Fast food and prepared food containers.
The preponderance of these items reflect the growing obesity problem in the U.S. Convenience foods are not only damaging to the environment because of their nearly indestructible packaging, but they are also a menace to health. Although some of the packaging is recyclable, much of it ends up in landfills or in our water supply.
These foods can be substituted by healthier alternatives that you can prepare at home, and take to work on on trips in reusable containers. Trips to fast food restaurants should be treated as a rarity or special occasion, and consumers will lose their cravings for these unhealthy foods and their environmentally toxic packaging.
Mail order goods.
Since many consumers are choosing to buy products online, an additional layer of packaging has been added. Buyers can help to minimize the need for boxing and packing materials by choosing options such as "frustration free" or minimalist type packaging, which allows items to be shipped with the least amount of packaging possible.
All it will take to cut down on recyclables is a little bit of effort and creativity. Your environment and your health will benefit, and you will feel good about yourself, which is always a good thing.
To learn more about recycling, visit a company like Industrial Services Inc.