Organization Basics Solutions
Five Ways to Waste Not
Change starts at home, but doesn't have to stop there. Here's how to practice environment-friendly habits anywhere and everywhere.
Concerned about the environment? Who isn’t these days? Practicing the Three R’s—reduce, reuse, and recycle—doesn’t have to take a lot of effort. And it doesn’t have to happen only at home. By making a few easy (yes, easy!) adjustments to your on-the-go routine, you’ll not only save resources—you may save money. And you just might save the world.
1. Ban the box
Old habit: Passing a juice box to your kids in the back seat of the car.
New habit: Instead fill small reusable juice boxes or bottles with your kids’ favorite drinks from the fridge and take them with you. If every student at your child’s school did this, it would keep approximately 107,000 disposable juice boxes from heading to the landfill every school year.
2. Bag your own snacks
Old habit: Putting prepackaged snack foods in children’s lunchboxes.
New habit: Make your own snack packs by dividing dry cereal, trail mix, cubed cheese, or sliced fruit among reusable single-serving containers. Not only do home-packed snacks reduce waste, they’re healthier than most convenience snacks, too.
3. Spin the bottle
Old habit: Buying bottled water to drink at work or the gym.
New habit: Drinking lots of water is important indeed. Just keep a reusable water bottle at the office and in your gym bag for filling up at the water cooler or tap.
4. Freeze it!
Old habit: Tossing out Monday’s lasagna because you can’t face Day Three of leftovers.
New habit: Freeze leftovers in a durable food storage container. Then bring them to work for lunch in a week or two when when you’re excited, not bored with your home cooking.
5. B.Y.O.D.B. (bring your own doggie bag)
Old habit: Having a restaurant wrap up whatever you don’t finish to take home.
New habit: Carry compact reusable containers so you always have an instant doggie bag when you need one.
- A family with two kids tosses an estimated 712 disposable juice boxes a year.
- Americans consume 26 billion liters of bottled water each year, or approximately one 8-ounce glass per person, per day, according to the Earth Policy Institute in Washington, D.C.
- Ten percent of the average grocery bill pays for packaging, according to the California Department of Conservation.