Recycling is good for the planet, period. With that in mind, it is highly likely that you, like most people, would like to do your part in saving the planet by recycling more. However, it is also likely that you don’t know where to begin, and how to make it all happen. Well, the best approach here is to start by reducing your consumption, and then recycling as much as you can.
While recycling does seem to be straightforward, it is anything but. To make sure that you do things properly, you will need to know what is recyclable and what isn’t. Furthermore, you need to be aware of the many different ways you can recycle your waste. Read on below to find out more about what and how to recycle.
Benefits Of Recycling
- Saving energy by reducing consumption
- It reduces the amount of waste that makes its way to incinerators and landfills
- Helps conserve natural resources such as minerals, water and timber among others
- Reduces pollution, global warming and the production of greenhouse gases by decreasing the need to extract new raw materials
- By tapping into a domestic source of materials, recycling also promotes economic security
What Are Things You Can Recycle
While some waste products are completely recyclable, some are not meant for the recycling bin. At home recyclable products are divided into two main groups in Australia. These are Cardboard and Paper on one side, and Packaging and Containers on the other. Following is a comprehensive list of the things you can recycle in Australia:
Packaging and Containers:
- Food containers made of plastic
- Bottles and jars made of glass
- Aerosol cans
- Milk and juice bottles and cartons
- Steel and aluminium cans and tins
- Water and soft-drink bottles made of plastic
Cardboard and Paper:
- Cardboard boxes
- Phone books
- Magazines and newspapers
- Pizza boxes that don’t have a lot of food scraps left in them
- Advertising material with removable plastic wrap
Creative Recycling For Common Household Items
Here are some creative recycling ideas you can use to repurpose your recyclable waste:
- Gardening pots from plastic water bottles: If you are an avid gardener, you can use old water and soft drink bottles as gardening pots – all you need is to cut them down to size
- Sprinklers from plastic water bottles: Old plastic water bottles can also be used to make an improvised water sprinkler.
- Jetpack costume from plastic bottles: Attach two downward-facing plastic bottles to one side of a piece of cardboard, and two straps to the other, and voila, you have an awesome jetpack costume!
- Bird feeders from plastic containers and bottles: Plastic water and soft drink bottles and containers make up a big proportion of domestic waste; thankfully, you can recycle them in many ways, including converting them into bird feeders.
- Sparkling garden lights from wine bottles: Place inexpensive battery lights into old wine bottles and turn them into sparkling garden lights.
- Toy organisers from old boxes and containers: If you always have children’s toys littered all over the house, you can use old boxes and containers to organise them.
- Repelling garden pests using old coffee grounds: Keep your garden plants free of pests by using old coffee grounds.
- Seedling propagators from old egg cartons: Looking for an eco-friendly way of germinating seedlings, you can use old egg cartons.
- Bold earrings from old buttons: You can easily convert your old buttons into trendy earrings with the help of glue and some post earring backs.
- Use wine corks to start barbecue fires: Are you out of kindling for starting fires or barbecues? Try using old wine corks instead.
Even with all of these wonderful recycling ideas, most homes will still have more recyclable waste than they can use. You can take advantage of containers for cash schemes, like envirobank – which excels in bottle recycling – and others that allow you to dispose of your excess recyclable waste in their recycling centre or recycling depot, in exchange for various rewards.
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