Ways to reduce, reuse and recycle
- Limit your use of single-use and disposable products and choose alternatives which can be used again.
- Opt for products with minimal packaging where possible.
- Refuse plastic bags when you don’t need them. Keep reusable bags handy so you remember to take them to the shops. You can also use boxes or your own shopping trolley bag or backpack.
- When buying fruit and vegetables, put them into your trolley rather than plastic bags.
- If you don’t read advertising mail, put a sign on your letterbox.
- When building or renovating, build only what you need and think carefully about your design. Choose durable materials and finishes as they should last longer.
Repairing household items instead of replacing them can be a great way to reduce waste and save money.
There are many ways to reuse household items:
- Give unwanted clothes, household items, furniture or appliances to family or friends, or donate them to charities. Freecycle and other online groups help communities give away unwanted items.
- If purchasing something, try to find it second-hand or buy items containing recycled content.
- Use washed takeaway containers as stackable containers for frozen food.
- Use glass jars to store food or other items, or pass them on to friends or groups who make jams.
- Use small plastic bags to wrap wet and smelly rubbish or to pick up after your pet.
- If building or renovating, consider using recycled materials such as windows or floorboards—you can save money and add character at the same time.
- Putting the wrong materials in your recycling bin may lead to large amounts of recyclable material being sent to landfill because it’s too difficult to separate them out.
- It’s dangerous to put hazardous waste like batteries, motor oil, chemicals, paints, and used lighting products containing mercury including compact fluorescent lamps in kerbside recycling.
- Find out what drop-off and recycling facilities are available in your local area. Contact your local council – they may collect other items for recycling, including mobile phones and printer cartridges.
- Contact your local council to find out what e-waste recycling services they offer for larger electronic and electrical products.
- Check with your local council for safe ways to dispose of hazardous household waste as it can’t go in your normal garbage.
- Recycle unwanted plastic bags or soft plastics including pasta and rice bags, shopping bags, net bags, cling and bubble wrap at most major supermarkets.
- Roll aluminium foil into a ball and place it in a recycling bin, even if it has food stuck to it.
- Compost your organic waste.