Eco Tip: Reducing Waste at Home

Marsha Low, Weavers Way Environment Committee

Hopefully, we’ve all been inspired by the May Zero-Waste General Membership Meeting. Maybe it’s gotten you thinking about ways to reduce waste at home. Some may seem obvious, but we all need reminding from time to time!

Reduce the use of paper: Consider reaching for a good old-fashioned handkerchief instead of a Kleenex when you have the sniffles, using cloth napkins instead of paper ones and cutting back on paper towels by using cloth for drying your hands and/or dishes, and rags for spills on the floor. 

Reduce the amount of things you discard: Whenever possible, compost your food scraps or set up a vermiculture bin. Bring containers or your own bags to use at the co-op bins instead of using the paper or plastic bags available at the co-op. For things that aren’t possible to recycle at curbside, such as old toothbrushes and dental floss containers, consider dropping them off at Across the Way and Next Door. They’ll be remade into new products by TerraCycle and will earn some money for WWCP. (For next month’s eco tip we’ll refocus on this and include a complete list of items that can be recycled by this program.) And for things you just can’t recycle any other way, consider stuffing them into plastic bottles, thus making bottle bricks, which can be used to build things like raised beds. In fact, at Martin Luther King High School, a keyhole garden will be made using bottle bricks. For more information on making bottle bricks, go to To donate completed bricks, contact Jackie Schrauger (