Reduce, Reuse, Recycle


 

Reduce

Simplify your life. Make energy conservation a routine part of your life. Conserve our natural resources for generations to come. Read the Climate Change page to find out how.

 

The Story of Stuff - 20 min., fast-paced, fact-filled, online video looks at underside of our production and consumption patterns. Think before you buy. Do you really need the item? Be creative. Improvise. What else could you use? If you still need the item, could you buy it used? When you finish using the item what will happen to it? Help reduce landfill waste. The average American generates 4.4 lbs. of waste each day, nearly double the waste we generated in 1960. Think about the cradle to cradle cost of all purchases, detailed in William McDonough's book Cradle to Cradle. Try to purchase items with limited packaging. Waste prevention is also known as source reduction. See the EPA site for further details. When you do purchase items buy durable goods that may be recycled or composted.

 

The National Geographic Society's The Green Guide: Plastic Containers provides information on which plastics to use and which to avoid:

 

Further information about BPA, Bisphenol-A, at Penn State Live:1.12.09  Probing question: Is plastic dangerous? 

 

National Resource Defense Council's Is BPA-free the Same as Safe?  Feb 2009. Bottom line, unable to determine because manufacturer does not state components of Tritan "copolyester" plastic.

 

Reuse

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recycle

Recylcing only helps if there is a market for the recycled items and if people buy recycled items. Conserving our natural resources for future generations needs to be the focus. Trees, for example, take many years to regenerate so we need to harvest them sustainably so we will always have wood to build furniture, homes, etc. Biodegradable products that are composted return nutrients to the soil.

 

Purchasing wisely helps conserve our natural resources. Think of what will happen to an item when you are finished using it.

 

Act 101 of 1988 requires commercial, municipal, and institutional establishments located in Pennsylvania's mandated municipalities to recycle high-grade office paper, corrugated paper, aluminum and leaf waste.  In addition, establishments must recycle any other materials included in the municipality‚Äôs recycling ordinance or regulations, which includes glass, newsprint, and #1 and #2 plastics.  Community events such as fairs, carnivals, and sporting events must also comply.

 

Habitat ReStores

Accept quality used and surplus building materials. What is accepted varies by store so call the store before bringing large items. Pick-up service may be available for a charge. These retail outlets sell the items to help fund the construction of Habitat houses in the local communities. Habit for Humanity is a nonprofit, ecumenical Christian housing organization building simple, decent, affordable housing in partnership with people in need. 

 

Freecycle

Grassroots global nonprofit organization seeking to keep usable items out of landfills. Sign in at the site to read postings, either items Wanted or Offered.  All items must be free. Enter your city or county and state to find the group nearest you. 

 

Read the Composting page to learn what organic matter may be composted in your yard.

 

Read Banning Burn Barrels by PSU to learn about the horrible hazards of open burning.

 

Climate Change 

Composting

EcoGardening

Native Plant Landscaping