May these little tips guide you and help you to not lose your mind over such a useful and actually quite simple task.
Composting: Not all cities and towns offer composting services – check in your home town! – it is really easy to start composting on your own. The ultimate goal is to of course waste less food, but composting is a way to give your veggies and fruit scraps new life. What can be composted? Eggshells, leftover veggies and fruit, plant waste and so on. What should not go into composting? Everything animal based (except for eggshells) like milk, curd, meat and bones.
Cardboard and paper: To recycle paper can be different from city to city, so have a look if there are any specific rules for your home town. The basic rule is that newspapers, office papers, used cardboard and so on should be clean (like not wet and dirty) and free of any plastic (make sure to fully remove the plastic wrap from the parcels you receive). Remember that small things add up over time, the morning newspaper can be purchased as an e-paper, might be worth making the switch. Or the paper cup your coffee is served into every morning, think about it: 365 cups go to waste. Might be worth it to buy a travel cup?!
Plastic: Here is the tick: only clean plastic can be recycled! If you try to smuggle in some dirty plastic wrapping or old plastic bags into your bin the whole trash bin goes into landfill! So better make sure to get it right! And one more thing: why don’t you actually use one of the shopping totes that are stuffed in your closet. I started putting one in every possible bag I own and places I frequently am at, like work, my motorbike, there is even one in my beach bag! If you find yourself at the cashier without a bag try to carry it in your hand or at least get a paper bag, this one can easily be recycled.
Landfill: This is the dark side of recycling…even the word landfill just sounds terribly wrong. The sad news is that most of our trash ends up in landfill. Even after big improvements some things simply can’t be recycled or reused. So have a look at what you purchase and how it is packed. Remember that small steps make the difference.
You want to know how waste segregation is managed in Auroville? Listen to our stories!
How do you recycle? How do you label your bins? We are curious, let us know!