Photo: Flickr / Aric McKeown
You already knew Americans are wasteful, printing 19 billion catalogues per year (53 million trees) and shopping 85 million hours. Now a new book, Garbology: Our Dirty Love Affair With Trash, calls us out for our wasteful ways, prodding us to kick our addiction to trash by buying less stuff and reducing waste.
It’s a tall order given the fact trash is one of our biggest exports, says author Edward Humes. However, in a recent interview with the Frugalista’s Natalie McNeal, he offered some useful tips worth trying:
Just say no to junk. “There’s nothing wrong or rude about saying no to disposable or to refusing unwanted catalogues and junky promotional giveaways,” Humes said. “Refusing wasteful items creates a market force for being less wasteful; accepting the fruits of the disposable economy only encourages more waste.” You can cut off junk mail once and for all by signing up for an app like catalogue Choice and by becoming a conscious spender who thinks twice before swiping the plastic.
Buy in bulk. “Try purchasing food and other products in bulk with your own containers, or use simple cleaners such as vinegar and Castile soap instead of the dozen or so chemically intensive, heavily packaged, and much more expensive cleaning products most Americans buy,” said Humes. You can also try switching from handwashing to dishwasher-cleaning and taking cold showers (really). These tips to cut energy costs from YM contributor Paul Sisolak are also helpful.
For the rest of Humes’ tips and his thoughts on waste, read the full article on The Frugalista.