Our local transfer station (dump) recently decided they are no longer accepting paper, glass or plastic for recycling. They say the cost is simply too high. They are still accepting aluminum, cardboard and steel cans (because they are actually paid for these items instead of having to pay). I’m not a complete freak about recycling and I’ve read all the pro and con info on the program, but I have to tell you I honestly get a little sick putting so much stuff in the trash… So I’ve been trying to think of ways to reduce my footprint in a world where everything seems to be packaged in something. I’m especially horrified by the overuse of plastic.
So I have a few ideas, but I would love more. Here’s what I have so far:
1. I’m going to start buying local milk. I don’t actually drink milk, but my husband does. And the local milk supplier packages in returnable/reusable glass bottles.
2. I’ve purchased reusable produce bags. They’re made out of netting and will keep me from using the plastic bags at the store.
3. I’m going to do my best to buy only loose produce. I threw away a plastic mushroom container over the weekend, which made me think of how easy this would be honestly. Yeah, I’ll have to actually, yanno, slice my own mushrooms, but I think I’m up to the challenge.
4. I drink almond milk, not cow’s milk for a variety of reasons. But that pesky carton it comes in is considered “plastic” by recyclers, not cardboard. So, I’m either going to switch back to cow’s milk (the local milk tastes SO much better) or start making my own almond milk. Honestly, this comes down to the cost of sourcing almonds since the actual making of the almond milk isn’t that much work. So for now, I’m trying to see if I can find somewhere online to purchase them in bulk for a reasonable price. If I’m unable to find something that’s a decent price, cow’s milk it is.
5. Most paper can be shredded and put in my gardening compost. So I’m not especially worried about that.
I already use cloth bags at the grocery store, but what other ideas do you have for me to reduce my use of plastic or “throw away” glass containers? I’d really love some more thoughts!