The first and most important step is to reduce your use of products that create waste. Choose a reusable cup instead of getting a paper cup at the coffee shop each morning. Use less packaging by purchasing in bulk, and recycle packaging correctly. Plan ahead to reduce impulse buying and always keep a reusable shopping bag in the car. Think about all the ways you could reduce waste everyday – start simple, learn from friends and neighbors, and start reducing waste today!
Did you know every Wisconsinite creates an average of over 1,700 lbs of waste each year? This adds up to 4.6 million tons of waste, just in our state alone. So what is all this waste? It’s discarded food, packaging, furniture, electronics, construction material, paint, cleaning products and much more – everything that has ever been manufactured or purchased goes somewhere, and most is thrown away.
In recent years, we’ve become better recyclers, and that’s great. According to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, 94% of Wisconsin households recycle and feel it is worthwhile, and 32% of us are recycling more now than we did two years ago. But even recycling has limitations and managing our waste has become more and more complex.
Despite strong recycling programs, Wisconsin residents and businesses continue to landfill over 9 million tons of waste a year.
Getting individuals and businesses to think about their daily waste, and then choose better management and/or disposal methods, will have a direct impact on our environment.
Your Actions Matter!
Working together we can help reduce our waste by following these 5 easy steps!
Together we can reduce waste for sustainable economic and environmental benefits.
Wisconsin has several waste and resource management organizations that work cooperatively with state, county, and local units of government, nonprofit organizations, and private sector companies involved in solid waste, recycling, and organics diversion programs including:
- Wisconsin Counties Solid Waste Management Association (WCSWMA)
- Solid Waste Association of North America – Badger Chapter (SWANA)
- Associated Recyclers of Wisconsin (AROW)
These three organizations have been pleased to partner with Discover Mediaworks to create an episode for their Emmy Award winning TV series “Into the Outdoors”. The episode Becoming Stewards: Uncovering the Solid Waste Story, educates viewers and will hopefully spark an interest to “become stewards” of our environment.