Cut down on your household waste and decrease what we deliver to landfill with these tips

Toothbrushes

Bamboo toothbrushes can be composted and recycled. Using bamboo toothbrushes may cut back around 900 tons of land fill each year. Decreasing your plastic waste by modifying your toothbrush might sound like nit-picking, nevertheless Americans toss out around 900 tons of toothbrushes each year. Does that number sound too high? It’s based on every American only throwing away two 20-gram toothbrushes per year.

There are currently a range of biodegradable choices to pick from, mostly made from bamboo. The first eco-friendly toothbrush in the planet was designed in America. Bamboo is fast-growing and durable, making it a sustainable alternative for plastic, and it can be thrown in the compost when you’re done with it. If you are intending to go the bamboo option, pick one with compostable packaging. There are some out there that come manufactured in plastic. And remember to get rid of the bristles first before throwing it in the compost — many are still made from nylon. If you’re genuinely keen, pigs’ hair bristles are a niche choice.

Composting

Composting food scraps rather than throwing them in the bin can be up to 25 times better for the planet. When our food scraps get buried in landfill, they breakdown anaerobically into methane, a greenhouse gas with 25 times the heating potential of carbon dioxide. Composting can help decrease household trash. Neighborhood gardens may take your compost if you don’t have space. By composting our food trash in aerobic circumstances like a compost container, they still emit carbon dioxide as they break down, but methane is limited. You can initiate an exterior compost with as minimal as one square meter of space. The trick is to balance the ratio of nitrogen and carbon. This sounds complicated but is actually pretty straightforward if you follow some basic rules. Household trash like food scraps, tea leaves, and things like chicken manure are all high in nitrogen, whereas things like lawn clippings and hay are high in carbon. Include these to your compost pile in a ratio of one part nitrogen to around 15 parts carbon, keep the heap damp but not waterlogged, turn it occasionally and you’re away. If you don’t have a backyard, there are still possibilities. Local community gardens will commonly take household food scraps for their compost, or there are small, self-contained compost drums that can reside on your balcony, or in the kitchen area.

Dump the coffee pods

Coffee pods don’t get recycled in most states. Americans use around 3 million coffee pods every day. Billions of aluminum and plastic coffee pods end up in landfill each year. Americans enjoy around 3 million single-serve coffee pods each day and the blended plastic and aluminum assortment are unable to be categorized at our recycling centers.

So what are the options?

If you’re really into the pods, pick the 100 percent aluminum assortment, which can be returned to some stores and participating florists for recycling. Alternatively, there are some compostable pod options on the market. But there are also consumer-friendly home coffee machines that don’t require pods at all. Some will automatically grind beans into standard shots, ready to be poured. You can also buy pre-ground coffee and use a stovetop coffee machine. If you desire takeaway coffee, check with your coffee store that they use beans rather than pods. And remember to bring your reusable cup rather than of using a disposable takeaway cup.