J500 Media and the Environment


Trash day is my favorite day! by lindsaycr
February 26, 2008, 2:47 pm
Filed under: Waste + Recycling | Tags:

When I read the assignment for this week, I was actually pretty excited to see where I would rank regarding trash consumption. When I picked through my trash, I came up with three major categories: paper, food, and plastic and cardboard containers.

I realized that the majority of my trash was paper products. That wasn’t surprising considering the fact that the EPA says that two-thirds of total waste is paper. My paper products included a magazine, some old homework, junk mail, and newspapers.

I hate wasting paper so I have always been pretty good about separating paper products from the rest of my trash. I even found a Web site where it teaches you how you can recycle paper at home.

The next big item in my trash was leftover food. I already knew that food could be used in composte, but I learned that I could also combine food scraps with yard waste to make it easier to recycle.

The last thing in my trash were containers and packaging for things like milk jugs, cereal boxes, etc. One of the things that I’ve always liked doing is saving plastic containers, like for butter or sour cream, and using them as tupperwear. That’s my way of saving the environment and money at the same time!

In the end, my one day trash consumption equaled less than one pound. When I tried to weigh it on my bathroom scale, nothing came up. One of the reasons I was so light was because there were a ton of paper products, but it would be interesting to see how heavy it would be on another day. At the end, I was glad to know that I was well below the national average of 4.6 pounds.

Lindsay

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4 Comments so far
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Since you’re talking about recycling paper, here’s the link for the recent recycling scandal in Japan:
http://www.treehugger.com/files/2008/01/lies_the_japane.php
http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2008/jan/18/greenbusiness.recycling

Four paper manufacturing companies had been lying about the volume of recycled paper used in some of their products. This was shocking for many Japanese. Paper recycling is pretty active in Japan, and I’m sure those who recycle should be upset. It’s important to recycle but I learned that’s not it. It might be interesting to trace how those recycled material will be used.

Sachiko

Comment by sachikom

For those of you living in Lawrence, we learned on our visit to the city compost facility this week that food cannot be composted with the yard waste. The city has a great composting program that diverts about 30-35% of Lawrence’s waste, but you can only include leaves and grass. Composting food requires a different permit, and the city hasn’t jumped into that pile yet.

They do sell some great enclosed compost bins, though, and for a considerable discount. For more on composting in Lawrence, check out the city’s Waste Reduction and Recycling website.

I’ve also got to say that the fire breathing dragon has convinced me to start making my own paper. But is there a way I can do it without bleach?

Comment by jseverin

Jeff, Now doesn’t that paper-making venture sound right up the Lawrence Sustainability Network’s alley? I bet they could help. . .
Simran Sethi

Comment by j500

Sachiko,

Thanks for the Web site about the paper recycling. I would have never thought that people would actually lie about recycling paper.

Lindsay

Comment by Lindsay




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