Frugal Tip Tuesday – Reduce, Reuse, than Recycle

You’ve heard this before right? Reduce Reuse Recycle?

This guy:

Growing up in Ontario, I was always taught these three R’s. It was big in my school board, my teachers were always telling us to reduce waste first, than reuse what we could, and what was left should be recycled. We had recycle bins in our class rooms, I was part of the recycling program, crafts were even done out of reusing things, not pre-made craft kits. It is a very simple idea, that has been around for a long time. It seems like people have forgotten it, or worse, never knew about it.

I know there are parts of Canada, and even more parts in the US, where recycling programs don’t exists. Heck, I had to get a proper recycling and compost program set up in my former office just 2 years ago! Our town recycles everything, and we compost even more. Our family has two very large blue bins that hit the curb every Friday, along with a large green bin filled with food scraps. Our household garbage is only collected every other week, and the number of bags is limited (this forces you to recycle and compost everything). And as great as my town is doing, there are other cities in this province that have even better programs. How can it be that this isn’t standard in other areas?

If you want to save money, and save the planet, reduce in every way you possibly can, than reuse what you couldn’t reduce, and lastly, what you couldn’t reuse should be recycled!

Are you given the opportunity to recycle/compost in your area? If so, do you? Or at the very least, do you reduce and reuse when you can?

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4 comments

  1. My apartment in Michigan only has a large trash compactor. There are a TON of small buildings in my “community” so we all have to walk our trash/recycling/organics to the dumpster and throw it all in.

    It makes me sad and it breaks my heart to do so. This place was built in the late 80’s so I think they thought lots of recycling areas near the buildings would be unsightly.

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    1. the apartment we lived in downtown had horrible options too. big building, with a big dumpsters for garbage, and than smaller ones for recycling and compost, and they weren’t clearly labeled so everything would get mixed up, thus making it all garbage. So pointless for us to go to the effort of sorting, but we still would and than just get frustrated with everyone else not sorting properly.
      It’s 2010, this should be standard in North America!

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  2. I recycle at work. It’s very easy, everyone has a recycling box at their desk. And there is a can/bottle container in our lunch area. No composting though.

    At home, it’s a different story. I live in a big apartment building. There is a bin for cardboard, so that gets recycled. But there are only tiny containers for paper, cans, and glass. Those get filled by the first person to recycle that week. So everything else gets thrown in the trash. Two huge garbage bins make it so easy.

    When I was growing up, the town I lived in had the easiest recycling. Everything recyclable went into a clear blue bag. No sorting or cleaning needed. The bags were sorted as part of the work program at the local prison. So easy almost everyone recycled! I think there was a limit of 2 garbage bags a week per household, but we never used it. Although we routinely had several recycling bags.

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