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Reducing rubbish

Where does all our rubbish go?

Most of our rubbish goes to a landfill site, which is basically a large hole in the ground, for disposal. There has been growing concern about his method of disposing of our rubbish as: 
  • There is less and less space available in current landfill sites
  • Rubbish disposed of in landfill sites can take centuries to rot away
  • There is concern about landfills contaminating underground water sources
  • Landfill sites produce gases which may contribute to climate change
  • Landfilling our rubbish is a waste of materials that could be put to use in other ways

We need to find other ways to get rid of our rubbish if we do not want to leave the problem for our children and grandchildren to deal with.

What steps can you take to reduce the amount of rubbish you create?

  • Try to avoid items that have lots of packaging as this creates at lot of unnecessary waste, you can do this by buying loose products
  • Buy items with packaging that can be recycled easily or biodegrades quickly such as paper
  • Refuse to accept junk mail. You can contact the Mail Preference Service, Freepost 22, London, W1E 7EZ, Telephone: 0845 703 4599 to request that your details are taken off all mailing lists. You can also send any junk mail back through 'return to sender' asking to be taken off their list
  • Buy bags for life from your supermarket or sturdy shopping bags and reuse them rather that getting a new one each time you shop
  • Buy larger packets of products as they last a lot longer and produce less rubbish
  • Buy refills. You can take containers back to some shops, such as the Body Shop to get them refilled
  • Use real nappies and handkerchiefs rather than disposable ones
  • Buy low energy light bulbs, they last a lot longer and save energy as well
  • Buy your milk from your local milkman and return the bottles, rather than buying a new bottle each day and throwing it away
  • Take recyclables to a supermarket 'bring' site, e.g. paper, glass, etc.
  • Buy items made from recycled materials, e.g. bin liners, toilet tissue, notepads etc
  • Try to find an alternate use for items before throwing them away, e.g. many materials can be used by playgroups or schools to make models, collages etc
  • Local charities, youth groups and schools might be able to make use of items if they are in good condition
  • Compost kitchen and garden rubbish

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