We all know how to recycle paper and plastic goods. You can find this information on your local waste management website or have it mailed to you. These are the most common things that they take care of, but I bet there are quite a few things out there that you had never considered recycling. Here are a few of them to help you up your recycling game.
After New Year’s Eve, you take down all your Christmas decorations and drag your tree out to the curb. Of course it’s only once a year, but they can be converted into fish feeders and used for soil erosion barriers. Check with your city to see if they offer this program, or if they are aware of places that can help you.
When your children have broken every crayon in the pack, most parents throw them away. With 60 tons of crayons produced in the U.S. every day, this can create very colorful landfills. Instead, you can ship your broken and unwanted crayons to Crazy Crayons where they will melt them down to create new crayons. There is no prep work, as in removing the wrappers, that you need to do before you send them off.
Once you have yanked out all the old carpet and padding materials, don’t put it on the curb next to your Christmas tree. Carpeting accounts for four percent of landfills and takes over 50 years to decompose, second only to diapers. Check with the manufacturer and ask them if they offer a recycling program for their carpets. If they don’t, the Carpet America Recovery Effort can help you get in touch with a place in your area that can.
Smoking is a bad enough habit, but worse over is throwing the cigarette butts on the ground when you are finished. They are the predominant waste produce found in the ocean and National Geographic considers them to be the “world’s number one litter problem.” They are often eaten by birds and fish that can choke on the butts or are poisoned from the toxins. Instead of tossing the cigarette butts on the ground, collect and ship them to TerraCycle so they can be converting into things like park benches, composite lumber, and plastic pellets.
Another program TerraCycle offers is the recycling of cereal bags. They are made of high density polyethylene, also known as HDPE or recycling number 2. If you prefer not to mail the bags, most grocery stores offer bins you can put them in next to the grocery bags they collect, or check Plastic Film Recycling’s website to find one close to you. The types of products they are turned into are garbage cans, outdoor pavers and lumber.
We might not live on this Earth for a relatively long time, but there will be generations after us that need our help in keeping the planet cleaner. Instead of tossing out items we no longer find useful, let’s try to bring them to the people who do.
Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who writes for Econoheat., the world’s #1 leading manufacturer of the largest waste oil burning product line.