10 Top Tips to make you a #RecyclingHero

Posted on Wednesday, 18 March 2020 by CarTakeBack

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It’s Global Recycling Day and the 2020 campaign theme is #RecyclingHeroes! Without wanting to sound too full of ourselves, we think we come pretty close to deserving that title – we’ve worked hard on our car recycling credentials and hopefully you know us as the environmentally responsible choice for getting rid of your old car. Plus, if you’ve used us, we’d be proud to have you as our sidekick!
  
Global Recycling Day was created to recognise all the people, places and activities that showcase how recycling contributes to an environmentally stable planet and a greener future for all. So, whether you are involved in a national scheme or you’re just making the effort to recycle at home, you are part of a global effort that can and will make a difference.
 
Even if you consider yourself an active recycler, we’ve come up with our Top Ten Tips to make sure you can definitely award yourself that #RecyclingHero title, and we’ll let you wear the cape!

Be a #RecyclingHero

1. Reduce

They say “prevention is better than a cure” and it’s definitely true when it comes to waste. Simply reducing how much we use, avoiding unnecessary packaging and choosing long-life alternatives where we can has a huge impact on the volume we end up even needing to recycle.

2. Re-use

OK, so we haven’t even started on the recycling yet, but re-using is another effective way to reduce the need to recycle! So many household items can be donated to charities or re-purposed for other uses around your house. An old t-shirt may be loved by someone else, used as a cleaning cloth, or used for a sewing project. Make yourself a house rule that nothing goes in the bin without considering if it could be enjoyed by someone else or used for another purpose!
 
Part two of our re-use tip is an important one – recycling water is a great way to save this valuable resource. You may not be in the position to install a big change such as rearrange your plumbing so that rainwater or wastewater from your shower is used to flush your toilet, but everyone can make small changes. You can use water that you’ve boiled your morning eggs in to feed your plants (once it’s cooled), or wash your car with water from a dehumidifier.

3. Anticipate!

We’re nearly at the R word! But this is a huge tip for people that consider themselves recyclers but may only think about it at the point that an item becomes waste. Try to think about recycling when you’re making a purchase and make sure if it can’t be re-used later down the line that it can definitely be recycled. Some clothing contains plastic, some electronics cannot be safely broken down, and many items of food packaging are still unrecyclable. If you buy the recyclable alternatives available, not only are you avoiding adding to waste, but you’re sending the producers of these items an important message with your own purchasing super-power!

4. Start good habits early

Passing on your good recycling habits to younger people will mean effective recycling for the long term without having to re-educate a generation. If you have children at home it helps to have a simple recycling system they can access; keeping your recycling bin/s next to your normal waste bin is a simple but effective reminder for everyone in your household to recycle. Children may even find that some of those items can be taken into school for art or science projects!

Get kids recycling early

5. Consider the unusual

Although it’s great that as a society we are making efforts to recycle, for most busy households it may only be standard food and toiletry packaging that avoids landfill. When it comes to items you can’t reuse or pass on there are now schemes available that recycle even the most unusual items including trophies, filters, bras, paint, tennis balls, instrument strings, corks, CD’s and old wax crayons! Of course, not all these schemes may be available to you but it’s worth a quick check online. Postage is often free and your unusual waste will end up with a new life!

6. Just because it doesn’t fit in your bin!

You will make a significant positive impact on the environment by looking into how the bigger items you use can be recycled when they come to the end of their life. There are often manufacturer or government services for recycling electronics and large appliances. Local stores may even be interested if they need parts.
 
You can guess what’s coming next and it’s that big thing outside on four wheels that sadly is at the end of its days… We not only collect old cars for free and recycle them responsibly, but we pay for the scrap too. That’s a top tip all day long and sadly there’s still lots of people with rusty cars on the driveway who don’t know they could use our hassle-free service. Be sure to share the great news and you’ll be doing them and the environment a favour.

Be a car recycling hero!

7. Clean it. Squish it.

As obvious as this tip may seem for some, many people still skip this important part of the recycling process. A contaminated recycling bin may result in the contents ending up in landfill so always make the effort to clean your recycling as you go. Not only will this safeguard all your and everyone else’s recycling efforts, but it will also prevent your recycle bin from smelling and keep any pests or rodents from poking around!
 
It’s always worth compacting your recycling too, whether you stamp on it, tear it up or generally take your frustrations out on it! The more space you save, the more recycling you can do.
(The same applies to recycling cars actually!)

8. Never take off your recycling hat

While we may be good at separating waste at home, when there’s no recycling bin to-hand when we’re out and about or in the office, it can be tempting to throw that sticky takeaway cup in the closest bin and forget about it. Keeping your good recycler hat on wherever you are will make a real difference. You can help yourself by thinking ahead and using things like a keep-cup for your coffee so you’re not producing rubbish in the first place. But if you do, keep hold of it until you can dispose of it properly. If you work in an office or attend a club where there’s no recycling options you could mention to the manager that a recycling bin would enable people to make the responsible choice. You may change the way a whole business treats their waste!

9. Help others

We bet there’s somebody you know, probably an elderly neighbour or family member that hasn’t really grasped recycling. They may not be clear about what items should really go in their recycling bin, or realise that you can take items like batteries to special recycling points. By offering to set them up with a recycling box in their house, taking their old items to a charity when you have a clear out yourself, or helping them put out their recycling for collection, you could change how they treat waste and you'll have made twice the impact! Even if everyone you know is an avid recycler, you may find a great recycling scheme for one of the more unusual items we mentioned and if you do, be sure to recycle (!) that info to friends, family and colleagues.

10. Support recycling businesses

As well as recycling your own waste, it’s important to support the whole process by purchasing recycled products, as long as they are things you need of course! You can buy all sorts of recycled goods from printer paper to shoes! Just be sure that not only have they been made from recycled materials, but that they can also be recycled (or at least re-used) again at the end of their life with you!


 
We hope our top tips have given you some inspiration for reviewing and improving your recycling. While it’s only part of the solution for protecting our planet it’s undoubtedly important and every effort you make is worthwhile. Give yourself a big re-usable pat on the back! And if you make the effort to tick off some of our 'Top Ten' we reckon you deserve Global Recycling Day's #RecyclingHero title… we're off to find you an old cape!

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