As a food grower and “waste-not-want-not” kind of gal, I use every shred of food that inhabits my yard, down to the final scarlet runner beans growing along the fence until mid October! So not surprisingly, I’m also into other ways to reduce our impact on the environment. Yup, the good old 3 R’s – reducing, reusing and recycling.
Our back alley has proven to be the best example of this over the past year. Put anything of any value out there and it’s gone within a day. Put anything returnable out there, and it’s gone in 5 minutes. No joke.
Recently we needed to get rid of a desk, and on its way to the back alley, our tenant had a glint in his eye and decided he wanted it. So he swapped it for his own old desk and took it to the alley. Later that night, we heard some scuffling out back, as a guy was expounding on the merits of this “amazing desk that would fit perfectly in their space”. This warms our hearts and happens regularly. In fact, within two weeks of setting the intention of needing a new office chair, our friend decided he didn’t want his amazing office chair anymore, and boom, ours went out to the alley to be snapped up within 12 hours.
Reduce, then recycle:
Recycling is good too, but ultimately, we want to reduce our use of “stuff” in the first place. So, while we are trying to reduce our use of Ziploc bags for kids’ lunches to 1 per day, we need to find a place to put these things once they’re used, as they are not accepted in our curbside recycling bin. Enter the blue recycling bins at Safeway or London Drugs, among other places. You can recycle your ziplocs (and other clean plastic bags) in there. Now if only they’d start charging (a lot) for plastic bags, we’d be even happier. Five cents ain’t gonna change behaviour.
Let us know your favourite 3-R’s examples from your life.