What Is Waste Prevention?
Waste prevention is the practice of preventing waste from being produced in the first place. This can be done by making decisions on what to buy at the store or how things are done at home, school or work.Why Waste Prevention is Better than Reuse or Recycling
Waste prevention is better than reuse or recycling because it saves energy, conserves natural resources, prevents pollution and reduces the production of products that are not needed.Prevent Waste by Purchasing Things that use Less Packaging
- Avoid brands that over package in order to provide more room for advertising or simply to enhance appearance.
- Buy in bulk and avoid single serving packaged items. Purchase products that are loose, without any packaging so that you can put them in your own bag and economy sized products that contain less packaging per volume of product.
- Purchase brands that have reduced the amount of packaging for their products. For example, some water bottles brands advertise that they have designed their bottles to be thinner and therefore use less plastic. Some liquid detergent products are condensed in that they contain less water so less product is needed per application and the they can come in smaller packages.Prevent Waste At Home
Remove your name from mailing lists. You can do this by contacting the company directly or you can write to:
Mail Preference Service
P.O. Box 9008
Farmingdale, New York 11735-9008 or visit: www.dmachoice.org
- Use Email and ECards rather than letters and cards.
- Get your bills and credit card statements online or via email.
- Shop online rather than using catalogs.
- Read newspapers online rather than having them delivered.
- Do backyard or verma-composting of yard waste and food waste.
- Leave grass clippings on the lawn.Prevent Waste at School
- For lunch, only bring to school what you actually eat.
- Bring a waste free lunch to school. Visit www.wastefreelunches.org
- If you use a computer for homework, run spell checker and proof read before you print.
- Email in your homework assignments if your teacher agrees.
- Create a paper reuse center in your classroom. Ask everyone to put paper that has only been used on one side into a container. Reuse this paper for calculations, drafts or to make pads for taking notes.Prevent Waste at Work
- Do duplex (printing on both sides of the sheet of paper) printing when possible.
- Organize electronically: use an electronic calendar, notepad, contact list and task list instead of hard copies.
- Use email to communicate when possible.
- In addition to setting up recycling bins for used paper, also set up reuse bins for paper that can be used on the reverse side for printing drafts, cover sheets for faxes, cutting up as notepads or for make substitute legal pads. You can always print lines on them if needed and it is often a good idea to cross out whatever was on the back side to avoid confusion.