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Protecting our environment is a responsibility that falls to every person on Earth. If each person takes small steps to reduce their personal environmental impact, the cumulative effect can result in a cleaner, healthier world for all of us. The idea of reduce, reuse, and recycle is a good starting point, but also think about the details.

Use Less

If you’re like most people, you have more clothing and personal belongings than you actually need. You may find yourself throwing out perfectly good items because you just don’t use them anymore. While donating to charities is one option, you should also think about reducing the amount of things you buy.

Using less not only keeps unwanted items out of the landfills, it also reduces your environmental impact at the source. The manufacture and transport of goods use precious energy and create carbon emissions. Think twice before filling up your closet and your home with excess items you don’t really need.

Recycle Materials

Many municipal trash collection companies offer curbside recycling, and that has made a big difference in reducing waste. But there may be some items you can recycle that you haven’t given much thought to. One example is metals like aluminum and steel. Metals should be recycled to save limited resources.

Large metal items such as refrigerators, washing machines, and furniture can be recycled. Metal scrap collectors and specialty recycling companies will accept these items. In addition, wood, textiles, plastics, and construction materials can all be recycled.

Reduce Plastic Use

Plastic is one of the most harmful substances to wildlife, water, land, and the human body. While you may not be able to completely avoid plastic, you can reduce your use by choosing alternatives. Using reusable cloth shopping bags is a start, but don’t stop there.

Avoid buying beverages in plastic bottles. Carry a metal water bottle and bring reusable cups to your favorite coffee shop. For your leftovers, buy glass storage containers instead of plastic (they’ll last longer, too). For plastics you can’t avoid, such as soap containers, buy reusable bottles and purchase refill size containers.

Reducing your personal impact on the environment starts with an awareness of the problem and a desire to contribute. You’ll only need some small change to begin reducing your waste. Over time, you’ll develop good habits that will lead to a more eco-friendly lifestyle.

Check out this article on big home items you need to save up for!