Waste not…

I posted this on my previous blog a while ago. It’s still a very relavent topic so I’ve added it here.

Last year we went on holiday to the Isle of Skye, staying in a self catering cottage. In the week there, one thing surprised me more than anything else. It was not the stunning beauty of the landscape; but something that happened after dinner.
We had instinctively separated out our recyclable waste—plastic, glass bottles etc. However there was no separate recycling scheme evident—as there is in Hampshire. To send something that was recyclable to landfill seemed incredibly irresponsible.
The notion of responsibility came back to me in recent weeks, when I read about Winchester City Council’s suggestion that non-recycling waste only be collected once every two weeks. This caused concern by some, primarily health issues. I think though there is a deeper reason why there might be concern.

We have lost the notion of responsibility for the waste we produce. So long as it “disappears” from the front of our house every so often we are happy. Every day in the UK every person produces somewhere between 1 and 2kg of waste. Most of which just ends up in a hole in the ground, and there it will stay for a time longer than our lifetimes. On average only 12% is composted or recycled.

Take responsibility for your waste – reduce, reuse, recycle. Reducing the actual production of waste is ultimately the best – we can really avoid the problem!

Reuse is the second thing to attempt – yoghurt pots are great for storing odds and ends. I’ve loads of big yogurt pots in the garage holding screws. If we can’t reuse, then we must try and recycle.
Think Globally act locally.

For more information on waste, and how to reduce, reuse and recycle visit this website.

Why you must keep things….

I’m a horder (or should that be an horder?) It pains me to see things thrown away, that to me have no value, but still retain something about them that could be useful in the right context. Of course by this definition nothing would be thrown away. This is a state that we should be in. Landfils are getting very full.

In the part “the old days” of computers when I first started using them, floppy disks could be 5.25″ wide – and really floppy. There was a notch on the side of the disk that you could cover up with a small sticky label. This had the effect of making the disk protected against being overwritten.

Time of course moves on, and the systems that used this disk have gone by (or collecting dust in my garage). But I still kept those labels in an envelope full of various different types of labels. 15 years later we were packaging up some greetings card to sell for charity. We needed some small sticky labels to seel the packets. Those old 5.25″ labels came out.

So next time you think “that might just have a use” save it, but be prepared to wait for 15 years!