reduce, reuse, recucle Think about ways you can reduce your waste when you shop, work and play. Changing your habits is key—there's a ton of ways to reduce waste, saving you time and money, and be good to the Earth at the same time.
reduce and save
When you avoid making garbage in the first place, you don't have to worry about disposal or recycling! Here are 10 easy ways to reduce the trash you throw away.
  • Use durable, multi-use products such as reusable shopping bags. You can throw one over your shoulder for hands-free carrying and it won't rip if you catch it on the doorknob.
  • Bring a reusable mug.
  • Pack a "no-waste" lunch. Put your lunch items in reusable containers and avoid single-serve packages.
  • Use both sides of the paper. Reuse paper that still has a clean side. Save it for scratch paper, draft copies or short-lived items such as meeting agendas or temporary signs. Even cut it up to make notes.
  • Buy items you can reuse. For example, reuse margarine tubs rather than buying plastic storage containers.
  • Avoid packaging. Buying on bulk and avoiding single serve products will reduce waste from packaging. For example, consider buying yogurt in a tub and taking single servings in reusable containers.
  • Buy Only What you need. Reduce unnecessary waste by avoiding those pointless purchases. Items that rarely get used can be borrowed or shared with others.
    Repair before replace - Try to repair before you consider replacement of items in your home, including lawn mowers, tools, vacuum cleaners, and TVs. Donate items you can't repair to vocational schools or repair shops.
    Change your printer settings to make double-sided pages.

- Receive and pay your bills via e-billing programs when possible.

- Use the back side of old documents for low priority printing.

- Buy used. You can find good furniture, clothes, accessories, and other used items at your local thrift store, antiques store, or online.

- When using household cleaning products, be sure that you only use the amount you need.

Borrow, rent and shop used first
Before you run to the store to buy a new item, think about how much you will use it. Could you borrow one from a friend or neighbor, rent it at a local store or purchase it used?
6. Buy well, buy once
Well-designed and constructed products that are repairable will last longer and usually save you money, even if they cost more initially.

Find new life for old furnishings, appliances and clothes
Instead of discarding your unwanted furniture, appliances, tools or clothes, try selling or donating them to groups and organizations that accept used goods. When deciding to purchase an item, consider buying used. Those items are less expensive than new ones and are often just as good.
sweatergarage sale signExample: Donate or resell items to thrift stores or other organizations in need. You could receive a tax deduction or cash for them. Buy and sell secondhand items at fairs, bazaars, swap meets and garage sales. Organize a garage sale in your neighborhood to encourage your neighbors to get involved in reducing waste.
Benefits: You can save money as well as reduce waste by purchasing furniture, appliances and clothes used.
Want to find out more?
garbage canDid you know? The average Mason County household creates over 10 pounds of garbage every day! That amount to about 4000 pounds each year and over $200 spent on throwing away the stuff you don't use.
Why Waste It?

A good portion of what you throw in the garbage each day is paper. Much of the paper generated in our homes comes in the mail. The average American household receives more than 500 pieces of advertising mail each year.

Recycling junk mail is okay, but reducing the flow of junk mail will conserve natural resources, save landfill space, and save you time and money.

Mail Preference Service
PO Box 643
Carmel, NY 10512-0643

More Helpful Links
Too much junk mail? Contact the Mail Preference Service, Direct Marketing Association.