Many of you may have read that our friends at CleanScapes, who drive through our neighborhood in florescent green and orange trucks each Wednesday, has the Seattle Waste Reduction Rewards competition going on. The service area that reduces their garbage, recycling, and yard waste the most gets $50,000 smack-a-roos! According to Candy Castellanos with CleanScapes in this Seattle Times article; however, the greater Wedgwood area (Wednesday collection service area) is trailing the greater Ravenna neighborhood (Tuesday collection service area).
The competition runs from September 2010 through September 2011, so there’s plenty of time for us to become more effective at reducing our waste. Here’s just a few ideas on how to effectively reduce your garbage, recycling, and yard waste:
- Look for products with minimal packaging or buy in bulk.
- Cancel junk mail by opting-out or going through a service such as 41 Pounds.
- Purchase reusable, durable shopping bags or reuse your paper/plastic shopping bags.
- If you have indoor cats, consider flushable kitty litter (provided your sewer line can handle it).
- Leave your grass clippings on your lawn as a natural mulch.
- Consider a compost bin or worm bin to create gorgeous, fluffy compost for your own yard.
- Switch from paper towels to cotton towels.
- Use Craigslist or Freecyle to give away or sell working and useful items.
- Check out the Sustainable NE Seattle Hands On Community Skills Fair for great ways to repurpose clothes, can your own food, make your own soaps, and other great waste reducing skills.
- UPDATE (2/1/11): Opt-out of the Yellow Pages using their just-released online interface.
- If you have other suggestions, leave your own thoughts in the comments below!
Last years winner reduced their collective waste by 19%. Let’s rally together and exceed the goal of a 10% reduction and surpass last years reduction. In the end, not only could greater Wedgwood win $50,000 big ones, but you could also save money too since Seattle has some of the highest recycling rates in the nation.
So spread the word, share this with your friends, email this to your neighbors, and post on Facebook. Let’s get everyone together to bring $50,000 to our neighborhood.
CleanScapes has been a generous donor to Wedgwood in the past, having donated waste collection services for our 2010 Summer Outdoor Cinema. Thank you, CleanScapes!