Every year, we throw billions of tons of trash in landfills. These landfills are ugly and smelly. Toxic chemicals can leach into the soil from them. And what happens when they’re full?
- One way to keep things out of landfills is to cut down on consumption, or shopping. Every time you bring something new into the house, you’ve added one more potential item to a landfill down the road. Learn to make do with less stuff. Reuse what you have, buy used, and use items for multiple purposes.
- Our food habits impact how much trash we throw out each week. Fast food sold in plastic, cardboard, and paper containers adds tons of waste to landfills every year. Cut down on eating out. Take a metal water bottle with you and ask restaurants to fill that instead of a plastic cup. At the grocery store, buy products in bulk or those with limited packaging. Growing more food at home also cuts down on waste.
- Avoid using plastic water bottles, which fill landfills and also pollute oceans and lakes. Drink tap water or buy a filter for your home. Stick with reusable water bottles when you’re out.
- Recycle many items including plastic, glass, paper, and cardboard if your community offers recycling.
- Compost food scraps and yard waste.
- Buy rechargeable batteries.
- Give experiences like a museum pass or an outdoor activity instead of gifts.
- Consumption: Using products
- Compost: Breaking down natural materials
Questions and Answers:
Question: What can I do to help right now?
Answer: Watch how much trash your family makes each week. Set a goal to cut down the amount of trash you produce. Recycle more, use real dishes and glasses instead of paper plates or water bottles, and buy only things you really need.
Watch a video about recycling: