What a Waste How Garbage is Costing You and the Environment A Lot More Than You Think


Grand rapids garbage

Waste not, want not, right? Well, at least theoretically. But the truth is, Americans waste a whole lot of food, a whole lot of clothing, a whole lot of water, and a whole lot of material. And while it may not seem like that much of a big deal on an individual basis, when everyone is doing it, all that trash begins to add up in devastating ways.

The American landscape is a much, much different place than what it used to be, with the wide open expanse of fields having been replaced with the seemingly endless sprawl of major metropolitan centers. And for as exciting as these areas are, they’re also major contributors to America’s growing environmental concerns such as pollution, waste management, and trash removal.

Most people think they’re doing a good job in terms of not wasting or creating too much garbage, but unfortunately, this is not that case. According to recent research, the typical American can throw away up to 600 times the amount of their body weight in trash alone. As such, it should come as no surprise that a whopping $11.5 billion is spent on an annual basis to clean up garbage in the form of litter. What a literal waste.

As one person, you may not think there’s much you can do in terms of reducing the amount of garbage, pollution, trash, and waste that is out there, but that’s not true at all. If every person did what they could to reduce the amount of trash they created, the amount of money and trash that could be saved would be astounding. Reducing your own carbon footprint and environmental impact is the environmentally responsible thing to do and make a larger impact than you may have imagined.

Reducing the amount of trash you create doesn’t have to be rocket science. In fact, there’s already probably a number of ways that you think can think of to reduce the amount of trash that you personally create. And aside from helping the environment, reducing the amount of trash you create is also a great way to save money! It eliminates the need to buy products that create trash, which in turn means more money in your pocket in the long run. So even if you don’t consider yourself an environmentalist, creating less personal trash and encouraging others to do the same can save you some big bucks.

Perhaps one of the simplest, easiest, and most affordable was to create less garbage and waste is to buy reusable containers and bags for shopping, storing leftovers, traveling, and more. Plastic bags are not only expensive to manufacture, but they’re also one of the most common causes of pollution. Just take a look at any city street and you’re bound to see plastic bags littered across the sidewalks. Buying reusable cloth totes saves more money in the long run and they’re more durable. Similarly, disposable plastic containers for leftovers are no match durable glass ones!

Buying bulk products, instead of individually wrapped items, snack packs, and single serve foods wrapped in plastic, is another simple and highly effective way to save money and environment at the same time. The plastic used to wrap these items often ends up as litter in some form or another, and is overall impractical compared to buying in bulk. Buying in bulk is real time and money saver, and allows you to ditch the plastic in favor of a more cost effective option. On a similar note, buying dish soap and detergents in concentrated forms can also be a real garbage and money saver!

You can dramatically reduce the amount of waste you create in your kitchen by creating a compost pile outside your home. Most people that have outside compost piles have a small bin of compost that they keep in their kitchen for convenience before adding it to the pile outside. Creating nutrient rich compost pretty easy. Simply place left over kitchen waste such as vegetable scraps, fruit rinds, and similar items in the bin.