Recycling Week – Batteries, Swapping and the Friday File Fling

Focussing on recycling during one week is a great opportunity to improve our efforts and take our good habits into the community, to work and to school.

In Australia, National Recycling Week is an annual event, and in 2012 it is on 12-18 November.

At home

Re-using and recycling at home has become second nature to most of us…but we can always do more…especially with our used batteries and other electrical items.

Recycling any batteries you use is a great way to reduce your impact on the environment.

  • If they are disposed of with general ‘waste’, they can be harmful to the environment. That’s because batteries contain toxic metals such as cadmium, mercury and lead.  Used rechargeable batteries are classified as a hazardous waste.
  • Your local council can advise where you can take your batteries for recycling.
  • In Australia:
    • you can take any battery to a Battery World shop
    • you can take AA, AAA, C, D and 9V batteries to an Aldi store
    • RecyclingNearYou can help you find how to recycle all sorts of stuff, including batteries, near you.

Of course, you can the impact of batteries by reducing your use of them!  Use mains power where you can. Rechargeable batteries can be recharged up to 1000 times, saving you money and reducing pollution.

We can also reduce the amount of perfectly good stuff we throw out!

If you’re like me, you might find it hard to put anything into the ‘rubbish’ bin or skip…but what about your wider family, neighbours, and friends?  I’m sure you know plenty of people who make great use of garbage collections

So, how about encouraging them to do the right thing…and recycle?

  • Hold a Swap Party. Planet Ark shows you how.
  • Donate unwanted items that still useable to a local op shop or to the white elephant stall of an upcoming fete…or sell them in a garage sale or online to generate some extra cash.  Perhaps you could help others to do this…and build your relationships and community at the same time 🙂

In the office

You may be doing your bit to recycle, but what about your home office (in whatever form it takes ;)) and workplace?

Many workplaces are becoming more sustainable by implementing simple and effective practices…and yours could join them (if it isn’t already!)

Encouraging other people to do actions to save energy, save water or recycle all have positive environmental outcomes…but finding the best way to do it can be a bit daunting.

How about hosting a Friday File Fling Friday File Fling on 16 November 2012 (officially), or any convenient date…or every Friday?

  • Did you know that only around 1 in every 10 sheets of office paper gets recycled? Much of it ends up ‘stored’ in files that will never be read again.
  • By hosting a Friday File Fling, you can declutter your office and get good, reusable office paper back into circulation.
  • Friday File Flings are a great team engagement activity to hold anytime throughout the year.
  • All you need to do is set some time aside and encourage your team, office, or organisation to clear out their files and get good quality office paper back in to circulation.
  • Fridays are great, as it’s easier to get staff involved and to combine the fling with afternoon tea or drinks.

Planet Ark has other proven tips for encouraging positive behaviour and sustainable practices.

At school

Did you know that kids have a powerful influence over the recycling habits of a household? So teaching them early about recycling will encourage the entire household to do the right thing.

Kids love having fun…and they can have fun while learning how to Recycle Right and the environmental benefits that follow. Planet Ark has some great ideas for this.

Action

How will you improve recycling next week?  Share your commitment in the Reply box below.

Till next time…be gentle to yourself and our world!

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