Friday, June 18, 2010

Tips for getting started on the 3 Rs

Ask Ida

Dear Ida B. Green,

I live in a small house and can't recycle because I don't have room. My kids are unhappy about this. Any suggestions?


Kid Pressured

Dear Pressured,

Start at the beginning: Reduce and reuse. Recycling should be your last resort.

Here are some Ida suggestions:

To reduce:

· Eliminate storage and disposal problems of single-use products.

· Use cloth napkins, washable plates, glasses and utensils.

· Drink your water from the tap and carry it in a single, reusable bottle (buy a carbon filter for taste if needed).

· Buy family-sized containers you eat or use often rather than stocking many small containers.

To reuse:

· Buy durable goods that can be used over and over.

· Use mops that have washable heads rather than throw-aways.

· Use cloth rags that can be washed instead of multiple paper towels.

· Use wastebaskets that can be washed out rather than needing plastic liners.

· Carry your own reusable shopping bags rather than accepting another plastic or paper one.

Now that you've gotten rid of the excess of single-use plastics and paper products, see what's left in your wastebasket. Choose the highest-volume recyclable you have and start recycling that in one wastebasket that you can empty into a larger container by your garbage can for weekly pickup or your next trip to Ohio Gulch.

Good start!

Easy to be Green,


—Elizabeth Jeffrey

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