As we move farther into the weeks of the holiday season, today, Monday, November 15, is America Recycles Day, the only nationally recognized day of recycling awareness.
Sponsored by the non-profit group Keep America Beautiful, this observance is based on encouraging and educating individuals to recycle at home, at school, and at play. Now in its 13th year, more activities have been added added annually, with over 2,000 registered events. .
Actually, to recycle one of the easiest things you can do is to in reducing your carbon footprint. It might take a few extra seconds, a few additional steps, reading labels a little closer, but those small steps all add up to make a big difference in the long run. Look at all of the unnecessary packaging, paper, and other items that pile up, ending in landfills. What you toss away, does not go away. Too often, what goes in the trash continues to live on for years and years afterwards.
On a personal level, I truly began to consciously apply the 3 R’s of reduce, reuse, and recycle into my daily life about two years ago, and it has made a huge difference. As an example, trash in big bags was thrown out daily, without separation of anything. However, once the paper, cans, and other items were placed into appropriate containers for my city’s recycling pickup, there was a complete turnaround.
Now, about 90% of my former “trash” is recycled, and the daily take-out lasts about 5-6 days, plus the bag is much smaller. Let me add that I also practice composting, so food scraps such as vegetable peelings, and newspapers return to be part of the cycle of the earth, further reducing impact.
Also, my level of consumption has gone down, as I’ve realized that all that “stuff’ isn’t really adding to the quality of my life, nor satisfying my higher self. So it’s OK to have things last a bit longer, refrain from shopping “just because,” and buy in bulk more often to avoid packaging that promotes waste.
One action you can take is to sign the America Recycles Day Pledge, and make a commitment to recycle as often as possible. Moreover, share this with friends and family, so they too can get involved.
Find out what you can recycle in your community. Visit Earth911.org, typing in your zip code, to find local resources
Being environmentally responsible means making smarter choices, consuming less, and implementing reuse into our daily lives..