Recycling and Reusing at Home: Tips from the Experts
Recycling household items can lead to a cleaner and greener environment. Recycling and reusing items can also help produce less trash that goes into landfills, ultimately harming our soil, air, and water.
Read these DIY upcycling tips and ideas from our experts and keep them close at hand. This way, you and your family stay busy and the planet cleaner.
How can we reduce food waste at home and slow down the climate change?
Urbanites can use food waste reduction methods to maximize the supply of food and to reduce waste and ecological degradation. City dwellers actually have abundant resources available to them to save food for future household consumption, to gather food for charity, and to compost food scraps. Means to save household food include efficient meal prep and meal planning, effective storage containers for leftovers, and preserving essential food items that can be stored in large quantities. Instead of designating food as simply waste, consider donating food to community food banks or local urban food recovery programs.
Daniel Braff from Green City Times™, LLC
What are the best eco-friendly cleaning products to use at home?
We believe in our entire eco-friendly Skoy product line. The Skoy Cloth is 100% biodegradable and compostable – why not use this instead of a regular sponge? This one product will save you money and the environment. As far as cleaning sprays, we suggest buying a concentrate to help eliminate bulk plastics!
Michelle Lundqvist from Skoy Enterprises LLC
What are some sustainable lifestyle aspects everyone can incorporate in their life?
When it comes to living a sustainable lifestyle, there is no one shortcut but it’s about a lifetime commitment to ourselves to take mindful decisions about how to inculcate a healthier relationship with ourselves and the planet. Here are some of the few ways by which we can create less negative impact on the environment.
- Household- Remember the 3R’s. Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. Using products that fit the 3R’s will not only minimize waste but also impact the environment positively. Apart from that, techniques like Waste Management, Waste Segregation, Rainwater Harvesting can also help to produce minimum to zero waste.
- Clothing- Adopting slow fashion by buying clothes that can last us for years can save so much of our money, time and resources.
- Gifting- Giving sustainable or handmade gifts on birthdays, festivals and special occasions can often invigorate a warm sense of satisfaction in the end of the receiver.
- Commuting- Walking or taking a bicycle ride for nominal distances can keep us healthy and our carbon footprint at bay.
Simar Mann from Sankalp Taru
Could you give us some tips on saving water at home and help the planet?
- Make sure to close the tap when you complete using it.
- Try to wash more clothes at once in the washing machine.
- Use wastewater for plants.
- Construct a soak pit to collect wastewater and increase the layer of groundwater.
- Check for any pipe leak in your house.
Sanjay from Muzcorner
What are the best eco-friendly backyard planting and gardening tips?
Plant for pollinators! For butterflies, plant both nectar (food) and host plants (where they lay their eggs). Use only organic products and no chemical insecticides. Before long your yard will be full of beautiful pollinators!
Carol Clark Montgomery from Clark Gardens
How to recycle and reuse your toner cartridges to help the planet?
Toner cartridges can be refilled and remanufactured and almost every cartridge out there has a chip inside that allows it to work only once, so its components are useful for many purposes after the initial use is finished. Toner Cartridges contain plastic parts,
metal parts, rubber parts, and plenty of empty space that can be used to store other useful materials.
If you have a printer at home or work, chances are you have some ink cartridges taking up space in your cabinet or closet. Inkjet cartridges may seem useless once the ink is dry and they may not be as expensive as toner cartridges, but they still contain plenty
of recoverable resources. It is estimated that about 12 million inkjet cartridges are thrown into the garbage each year nationwide.
The fact is that every kind of printer cartridge can be remanufactured and recycled, but you need to do your research before throwing them away in the trash. Remanufacturing simply means taking all reusable parts out of one used cartridge and putting them into
another, similar cartridge. Toner cartridges are remanufactured by companies that buy empty cartridges and replace their parts with new ones. Reprocessing is a slightly different process that involves taking all reusable components out of the old cartridge
(such as plastic, metal and rubber) and making them available for future use.
Alberto Palumbi from Premium Toners
What are the best recommendations to recycle and handle household waste?
Understand what is in your trash that can be recycled, whether it cardboard, paper, plastics, metals, or textiles. Americans tend to recycle only 30% of our garbage! Talk with your curbside recycler or municipality to see which commodities they accept and any requirements for storage or hauling.
Lane Powell from Harmony Enterprises
What are the best steps to take towards sustainable shopping?
There are a number of steps one can take to ensure sustainable shopping. To start, try to be mindful of your actions at all times. Learn about the different types of waste that are generated and don’t make unnecessary purchases. Choose local produce instead of imported and always carry a sustainable shopping bag for the items you are buying. These small changes can help greatly, especially if they become habitual over time.
Megan Kioulafofski from Sol+Spirit
How can we strive towards zero waste cooking and a sustainable kitchen at home?
Our kitchens are responsible for a huge amount of household waste. Making them zero waste is a big challenge, but it is possible.
The vast majority of waste generated in our kitchens comes from food, packaging and cleaning products. The biggest thing you can do to reduce waste coming from your kitchen is pay attention to the food that you buy, be creative and use what you have. By making use of what we have in our fridges, cupboards and freezers we reduce the amount of food that goes stale.
Another great tip is to shop at sustainable grocery stores or zero waste shops. Let’s be honest, it’s very difficult to source absolutely everything you need in your home sustainably, but visit your local zero waste shop and you might find that it’s easier and cheaper to buy bulk staples there instead of in plastic packaging at your nearest supermarket.
Finally, washing up is a hugely wasteful household chore. Try switching to eco friendly dish soap and reusable bamboo washing up brushes. By doing this, you’re pretty much kicking your washing up waste to the curb and as an added bonus, it makes a typically dreaded household job feel a little bit fun!
Jamie from Jungle Culture
How does consuming and purchasing recycled products make a difference towards climate change?
An easy way individuals can make a real difference in the fight against climate change is to buy recycled products. Using recycled materials decreases our reliance on virgin materials that require energy-intensive extraction and processing. Plus, recycling reduces the amount of material that ends up in landfills, a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions.
Sarah Winkler from Everyday Recycler
What are the top things you can do from home to act towards the negative impact of climate change?
- Make more use of your outdoor space. The more time you spend outside your home, the less energy has to be used inside the home to entertain you and keep you comfortable.
- Choose fans over air conditioning. Ceiling fans and pedestal fans use much less electricity than air conditioning. In addition, they won’t dry out your skin!
- Make the most of renewable energy. By using our appliances which use the most electricity during the day (washing machines, dishwasher, pool filter etc.), we are using renewable energy over fossil fuels. Where you live could have a different renewable energy profile – perhaps you have lots of wind farms feeding into your grid and they receive the most wind during the early evening.
- Use less. Of anything and everything! Less water, less food (I’m not even saying to eat less, just don’t waste so much), less electricity, less clothes. It doesn’t matter what it is, every consumable takes energy and materials to get it to your door. The less you use, the more the planet benefits. You can start by aiming to use just 5% less of some things. Take a slightly shorter shower. Mend an item of clothing instead of buying something new. Go for a walk instead of sitting down to watch television. Using just a little bit less of things is actually quite easy!
Dr. Mahdi Mason from Mahdi Mason
Could you give us your best tips on how to create an eco-friendly/sustainable home office?
The best tips for creating a sustainable home office are to utilize furniture and decor that you already have, or repurpose materials to create the office environment you would like. Turn off and unplug when you are done in your office and be conscientious of whatever natural light you can incorporate when creating your space. Be sure to include some plants as well in your environment and keep your area organized and clutter free.
Ashley Doran from Vapur
What are the most essential tips for beginners to start a zero-waste lifestyle?
The easiest way to get started is to take stock of products in your own home – if you’re not going to use something, don’t throw it out or let it expire; give it to someone that can use it. Don’t go out and buy anything new until you’ve used up what you have, whether it is “zero waste” or not. Wear the clothing in your own closet, address any over-shopping or over-consumption behaviors, and begin trying to source things that are second hand or reused instead of buying new. Use the time you need while using up products you already have to learn about alternatives, so that when it is time to buy, you can buy with intention.
Ange Defosse from Harlowe Green