5 Useful Recycling Tips and Ideas

Did you know that every year the average Australian family produces nearly two and a half kilos of waste per day? That’s enough to fill a three-bedroom house! We send more and more rubbish to landfill every year, and unfortunately, it’s not just a case of ‘out of sight, out of mind’. A lot of the waste we throw away will be around for a lifetime – plastic bags, for example, can take between 20 to 1000 years to decompose!

That’s why it’s important that we consider what we’re purchasing, what we’re throwing out, and what we can refuse, reduce re-use and recycle. Here are our top 5 recycling tips and ideas.

#1 – Refuse

There are some items that if you refuse to use or purchase will actually help improve your recycling habits.

  • Plastic bags – The majority of these little nasties end up in landfill and many of them in our oceans. Use your own non-plastic bags when shopping, and try to buy from supermarkets and retail stores that have a no plastic bags policy in use.
  • Bottled water –The process of manufacturing a litre of bottled water results in a lot more greenhouse gases being produced than using tap water. Always carry a refillable bottle (and one in the car, home and at work) and top up when you need to.
  • Junk mail – Put a ‘No Junk Mail’ sticker on your letterbox to reduce paper waste.
  • PVC plastic items – Found in items like drinking straws, rain gear and plastic toys, not only are these products non-recyclable, they are harmful to the environment, and some have been shown to have adverse effects on human health.

#2 – Reduce

Other ways to improve recycling, including using things you own until they are finished, unusable or broken. Then when it comes time to replace it, ask yourself if you really need it. If yes, try and opt for an environmentally friendly alternative.

  • Buy second-hand, borrow items, and try to repair clothing, appliances and toys rather than buying new ones.
  • Reduce waste by taking your own reusable coffee cup to work, weekend activities and for that caffeine hit while shopping!
  • Buy bulk when possible, and try not to buy more than you’ll use.
  • Choose products with less packaging and packaging that’s recyclable.
  • Reduce energy waste by switching to energy-efficient light bulbs and appliances, and choose the cold water setting when washing clothes.
  • Reduce water waste by fixing leaking taps, using dual-flush toilets, using the control nozzle on your hose, and only running dishwashers and washing machines when they’re full.

#3 – Reuse

Another one of our easy recycling tips is to try and reuse items wherever possible.

  • Reuse any small plastic bags you have at home for purchases, and when shopping, look for products in reusable and refillable packaging.
  • Donate unwanted furniture, clothing and white goods to charities, or consider holding a garage sale rather than throwing them away.
  • Use rechargeable batteries and make sure you dispose of any single-use batteries properly.
  • Try and use takeaway containers, aluminium foil and glass bottles and jars over and over again before recycling or disposing of them.
  • Pack lunches in reusable containers rather than in disposable wrappings.
  • Reuse your green waste – over 50% of rubbish sent to landfill is food and garden waste. Create a compost bin or why not invest in a worm farm?

#4 – Recycle

There are many useful strategies you can adopt when you’re looking at how to recycle more efficiently.

  • Use your recycling bin! Acceptable items include glass jars and bottles, PET plastic soft drink bottles, HDPE plastic milk bottles, milk and fruit juice cartons, aluminium and steel cans, and paper, light cardboard, newspapers and milk cartons.
  • When using your recycling bin, make sure you don’t bin items in plastic bags, and keep potentially hazardous household waste like motor oil, pesticide and paint separate – your local council can offer more advice on how to safely dispose of these.
  • Visit your local council’s website and find out when your next kerbside collection is. Place your recyclables on the footpath on the set collection day, and they’ll be picked up just like any normal garbage collection!
  • Local councils also offer recycling and waste services as well as local drop-off options for items including batteries and computers, and some retailers also have recycling boxes for mobile phones and printer cartridges.

#5 – Re-educate

Yes, we’re probably all aware of how important the need for recycling is, and taking on-board a range of recycling tips and ideas is a great first step in tackling the ‘war on waste’. However, in our super-busy lives, constant reminders and re-education can go a long way towards solving waste management problems.

  • In the home environment, make sure you sort your rubbish properly, and when you purchase products, choose them according to their kindness to the environment.
  • At work, become informed about the potential for recycling and waste minimisation, and push for the more efficient use of resources like energy and office paper.
  • Support school recycling systems, educate your children on litter control, and teach them to be responsible recyclers and consumers.

And if you’re undertaking a home or garden clean up and need a hand with the recycling process, contact Cutter Skips. We do everything possible to ensure our waste management systems are as environmentally responsible as possible. Just give us a call!

Recycle responsibly – with our help. Get in touch with the experts at Cutters Skips today on 0417 644 901.

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