De-cluttering is important, but it is also important to keep as much as possible out of the landfills. It is time to think beyond your home recycling bin. A lot can be recycled in most household recycling, but we need to move beyond that to be good stewards of the earth.
When you have a pen that runs out of ink or a marker that runs dry, do you throw them away? What about old socks with holes? Or rags? What about a bag of chips? Rubber bands? Then there is the ever annoying Styrofoam? All of these items are recyclable, but not in your home recycling bin (at least not most of ours). It might take a bit of creativity on your part and some searching on the internet, but I would bet that you can find a way to recycle most items in your home.
Here is the list of what I recycle outside of my curbside puckup. Please check your local resources.
- Pens and markers: our county library has a collection bin by the checkout desk.
- Old fabric: County convenience sites in the county where I live.
- Chip bags and other packaging: Terracycle. I take items to a local drop off at a Whole Foods store, but you can send in your items as well.
- Rubber bands: These can be composted. I take them to Whole Foods and place them in the compost bin there.
- Styrofoam: This was a hard one, but I found a local place that will take Styrofoam from homes, but you have to pay $5. So I save it up for years and then take it. For locals, the place is called Shimar. I had to contact our state department of natural resources to find out places.
- Electronics, cell phones: my county recycling drop off centers takes these items, but so does Best Buy.
- CDs, DVDs, Jewel cases, ink: It isn’t listen on the Best Buy website, but the locations around us have recycling bins for these items.
- Batteries: Best Buy, Lowe’s (Home Improvement), and my county recycling drop off.
Before throwing something in the trash, I research if it can be recycled. We still have more trash than I’d like, but we have less than a bag a month for a house of three. My goal someday would be to be as trash free as possible. What else do you recycle outside of curbside pickup that I did not include on my list?
Items purged today: picture album x 2, pen x 5