Works for Me: Trash Reduction

Works for Me: Trash Reduction

trash, recycling, yard/food wasteEffective the first of this year our city’s solid waste contract renewed, making some improvements. Our trash can used to be as big as the can on the far right, and our recycling containers were three small stackable crates I needed to haul out from the back each week to put out for pickup – a huge pain in the neck, particularly during rainy season. The crates were always overflowing, and stuff would always fall out or blow away. Inevitably, we had to add more recycling containers of our own to hold all the recycling we had each week.

The changes in our solid waste pickup did away with the small recycling crates, and we were given the gigantic blue bin in the middle. I heart this blue bin. It’s on wheels. It has a handle. It’s gigantic (did I mention that?). And with the blue bin we were given a list of new things we’re able to recycle, reducing our trash even more.

Which is a good thing, because do you see how tiny our green trash bin on the left is? I would say it’s about the size just right for a five year old to stand in comfortably – not that I’ve considered the pro’s/con’s of putting a five year old in my trash can. Nope. Haven’t considered that.

The tricky thing about this new contract, though, is our trash now gets picked up EVERY OTHER WEEK. So, a trash bin about half the size we’re used to now has to last twice as long. *Gulp.* But guess what? We’ve survived!

I was skeptical at first, and assumed we’d need to request (and pay extra for) a larger bin. But along with increasde recycling allowances, we’ve also been given the go-ahead to put all of our food waste in the yard bin on the right. Yay!

This has also made a drastic difference in our trash disposal. We used to empty our kitchen trash every day or two, but now we go several days before needing to empty it. And really, the only thing in it anymore are the plastic bread bags, cling wrap, and other plastics that aren’t recyclable.

I’m not sure I would have made these changes had they not been introduced by the city. First of all, the recycling bins we had were inconvenient. Secondly, There was a limit on the type of items we could recycle. But in general, I didn’t make much effort to recycle, and often threw recyclables in the trash out of laziness and convenience. But seeing the difference in size between the trash can and the recycling and yard waste bins was an eye opener to the amount of trash I was used to throwing away, and that kind of awareness works for me!

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