Ways to Reduce Waste Sent to Landfills

Video Transcript:

I'm Anjie Cho, and these are ways to reduce waste sent to landfills. Did you know that in 2012 Americans disposed a total of 4.6 pounds per person per day. It's interesting to look at this chart from the EPA to see what we can do to reduce waste sent to landfills. 

Paper and paper board can be reused and recycled. I always make sure to print on both sides of the printer paper if possible. I also save the paper and use a blank side to make a scrap paper notepad. Plastics can also be reused and recycled. I try to reuse plastics as much as possible. I also BYOB, bring my own bag, when I go shopping. If you forget your bag, opt for paper, it's easier to recycle.

For both paper and plastic, whenever possible reuse first then recycle. I also encourage you to purchase post-consumer recycled content whenever possible. By choosing post-consumer recycled you support and create a bigger demand for recycling and the infrastructure for more environmentally responsible living. Less products are made from virgin materials and therefor reduce the waste sent to landfills.

Glass and metals like this are the easiest materials to recycle, so no excuses. Yard trimmings and food waste can be composted.

Food waste that doesn't go to the landfill, doesn't, or that goes to landfills doesn't decompose but instead it produces methane, which is a greenhouse gas. Instead, compost the food waste and make it into something useful. Many urban areas offer community compost programs.

Rubber, leather and textiles can be recycled through textile recycling programs, or if they're still usable, take them to your local Goodwill.

I hope we can all work together to reduce waste sent to landfills by reducing, reusing, recycling and composting as much as possible.

by Anjie Cho