Hate to Waste - top tips on how to reuse old items
Written by Ivana on May 4th 2018
It is very easy to just get rid of some items or products once you no longer need them but, unfortunately, the effect it has on the environment is destructive. If you decide to reuse any of your things, not only will you be able to express your creativity, but you will also save money and help protect the environment.
Here we are offering you some of the top tips on how to reuse your products in the most creative and environmentally beneficial way.
1. You use a lot of paper, whether for personal or professional purposes? Use recycled paper and print on both sides. By recycling one ton of paper, you can save close to 20 trees, as well as more than 5,000 gallons of water. It does not take much time and it can do a lot for the environment.
2. You have finally bought that new computer you have been saving for so long and the old one is now useless? Hold on a minute before you decide to throw it away and think about what use it can still have. Donate your old computer, your audio visual equipment or old books that you no longer read to community groups or schools. The students there will be very grateful to you for giving them a chance to learn and your equipment or items will be of use once again.
3. The spring has arrived and so did the opportunity to do a detailed cleaning of your closet? After you are done with cleaning, you have so much clothes that you need to get rid of because it takes up too much space for all the new clothes bought recently? If this is the case with your clothes, do not throw it away. Give your old clothes to someone in need, for example to a charity store nearby. Get rid of something you no longer need and do a good deed at the same time.
4. Another useful piece of advice for which environment will be eternally grateful to you is the use of rechargeable batteries. These types of batteries can be charged up to 1000 times and be recycled afterwards so why not try them for the sake of our environment.
5. If a number of empty bottles, glass jars and pots are piling up in your home and you think they are useless, think again! They can be used easily to store food and other items. Just clean them and use them to store dried food items like grains and beans or sauces and jams. Pretty good idea, don't you think?
6. If you frequently go to coffee shops to get your favourite cup of coffee, next time you do so, take your own mug or thermos with you to the coffee shop. You might not believe this, but some shops will actually offer a discounted price if you stop by and order coffee having your own container.
7. Also, next time you go to the supermarket, instead of getting a disposable plastic or paper bag, take your own shopping bag. Plastic bags are so easy to get but we hardly ever use them past that first time. You might not have known this but it takes between 15 and 1000 years for a single plastic bag to decompose.
8. Speaking of plastic bags, we are sure you have plenty of them in your home. Since they are already there, you can still find some useful purpose for them. You can use plastic bags to store different food or ingredients to keep them fresh for longer. When working with especially messy foods, you can put a couple of plastic bags over your hands and use them even as gloves. Another great use of plastic bags is while gardening - if you cover small pots with plastic bags to create a mini greenhouse, your plants will sprout much easily.
9. If you have too much old newspapers and magazines at home that you no longer read, donate these magazines to hospitals and waiting rooms. Also, newspapers can be very useful while packing material when you are moving house or when you need to store items.
10. If possible, drink tap water or filtered water from reusable bottles rather than bottled water. As already mentioned, the bottles take years to decompose whereas reusable water bottles minimize pollution and conserve energy. If your option is to buy bottled water nevertheless, try buying water in bigger bottles instead of many smaller bottles since these are used much faster and cause a much higher pollution.
11. Whether at home, during a picnic or a party, use washable utensils, cloth napkins, sponges and dish cloths instead of plastic and paper throw-away items.
12. If you have a pair of old glasses, donate them! Millions of pairs of perfectly good glasses are thrown away each year in Europe and North America when they could be used by many people in the developing world. One might be surprised to know that opticians will accept their old glasses particularly for this purpose.
All of the mentioned suggestions are very beneficial to our environment, it is only up to us whether we will apply it. If we only think about how much the environment is giving to all of us every single day, then some of these pieces of advice are the least we can do to thank it for everything we are receiving.