Recycling during Move-in

Illinois State University welcomes students back to campus for the 2019 fall semester. Students unpack their cars with family and friends as they move into Watterson Towers or Hewett & Manchester Halls. Volunteers work together to sort through recycling outside of Watterson Towers. 

We all know the easy way out when it comes to  being eco-friendly. Buy a recycling bin and call it a day. Recycle every now and then and it seems like you’ve got this all figured out. But how much are you really helping the Earth out? I will admit, I’m not the best at being entirely sustainable — I blame my wallet — but here are the three steps I would take to start shaving down my carbon footprint on the Earth.   

1. Look at the amount of excess plastic you use, and search up some alternatives to help lower your single & regular plastic use  

Now if you are a victim to the trend of just recycling, this kind of relates to that.

Most people don’t realize just how much plastic is in everything they use. Think of all the shampoo bottles that just get thrown away, the floss containers that never get recycled, and so many more small things like this.

There are some simple ways to combat this. The easiest one is to make sure the bottles you buy (if they are plastic), are recyclable and in turn are recycled. It’s basic. If it can be recycled, recycle it!

If you want to take this a step further, look up some alternatives to your everyday plastic use. When looking at things like plastic bags and plastic wrap, there are alternatives like beeswax paper and reusable plastic bags.

Just be aware of all of the single-use plastic that you use and do some research on easy alternatives. 

2. Shop local, any way you can.  

My favorite way to do this is to shop at my local farmers market. I have always been a fan of heading over to the farmers market with my family and trying the local foods. It has always been a great feeling knowing I am supporting local businesses and their growth.

Not only this but shopping local helps immensely when it comes to environmental issues and your carbon emissions. Many people don’t realize how much goes into getting produce, meat, snack foods, etc. into the markets you buy things at.

Things are shipped or flown over here just to stock entire grocery stores. Even though it is difficult to afford and buy everything locally, it is nice to make a small change in any way.  

3. Learn to compost!

I’ve already written about this once before, but composting is one of the best ways to help lessen your carbon emissions while also helping lessen your own personal waste.

If you are looking for a simple way to get rid of kitchen scraps like banana peels and things like this, here is an easy solution that doesn’t increase landfill occupation.

I have talked about the benefits of composting before, but if you are looking for a more detailed guide to doing so, check out Hermann Samano’s article at Porch.com.  

 

AUGUST MUNOZ is a Reporter for The Vidette. She can be contacted at amuno14@ilstu.edu. Follow her on Twitter at @munoz_august 


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