Recycling is not just good for the environment, it’s good for you. Living in a more environmentally conscious way allows you to feel more in tune with the world and to feel happier within yourself. But it can be a great big pain in the backside… So why not consider these hints and tips for making it easier for yourself and those living in your home to recycle effectively?
The first thing to tackle is the convenience of recycling. Obviously, you won’t be walking outside every time you have a tin to pop into the red wheelie bin, or a newspaper to chuck into the beige one. But if you keep your eyes open you can purchase plastic boxes which fit onto your kitchen counter and are labelled with the intended contents. This allows you to chuck paper, tins and plastic bottles into the provided boxes, which are later emptied into the appropriate wheelie bins. Make emptying the boxes a regular chore, which will allow you to keep them tidy and clean. You may find you need to rinse them out periodically, especially if some people are not particularly careful about washing out tins before putting them into the boxes. Make sure you impress the importance of doing this on everyone you share your home and bins with, as it can get in the way of effective recycling in the recycling centre, too!
Knowing what goes where can be a matter requiring a very special memory. However, many local authorities can provide you with booklets and even posters detailing what does and does not go in which bin. Hang or keep these in easy reach so you and your housemates can consult the relevant guides when in doubt. If your green bin, in the garden, also takes food in bio-degradable bags, it is best to get a box with a sealable lid so you don’t have to cope with the smell, but aim to empty it reasonably often, once or twice a week at least.
Occasionally a bin is overlooked during pickup. It’s important to ring your council about this before 24 hours have passed, as they can often not arrange for a rubbish lorry to come back for it if you ring them later than that. Have the number to hand in case of any trouble, so you can get assistance whenever necessary.
Recycling can be a difficult proposition and many people are overwhelmed by the prospect, but if you think about it and creatively address the possible or actual resulting issues you can make it easy for yourself and easy for your house-mates.