We’re constantly finding new ways to reuse, reduce, and recycle. For decades, the “Three Rs” have been the mantra for sustainable living and environmentalism. Now we’ve added a fourth R to the chant: Reuse, Reduce, Recycle, and REFUSE!
State of the Planet
By reusing, reducing, and recycling we’ve managed to eliminate a ton of waste, reduce landfills, and reduce climate change and pollution. However, we still have a long way to go. A recent report says that we’re already in a dire situation, that it’s not enough to meet the climate goals set forth by the Paris Climate Accord, but that we need more severe measures to roll back the devastating effects of climate change. You may not think that one person, one household, or one small business can make a difference, but you can. We all need to do our part, and there are simple things that you can do as a private citizen and consumer to help our planet. One of those things is to simply refuse!
Refuse to Contribute to Climate Change
The biggest problem that we face is greenhouse gas emissions. To prevent a devastating rise in global temperatures, we must reduce greenhouse gasses. As a consumer, you can force big businesses to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and start practicing more sustainable and environmentally safe methods of production by refusing to buy products from companies that are not minimizing their carbon footprint. The quickest way to get a company to change their ways is to hit them where it hurts, their bank account.
Refuse Single-Use Plastics
Reducing the number of single-use plastic items that we use will have a big effect on our carbon footprint. Refuse plastic bags at the grocery store, refuse all plastic straws, and refuse non-recyclable to-go containers. Sometimes, good things come from just saying no and refusing to participate in environmentally destructive practices.
Support Local Companies
By supporting your local businesses, you are cutting back on your carbon footprint, and rewarding companies that practice sustainability. Local companies tend to operate within their community, especially farmers and ranchers. Shopping for seasonal fruits and veggies will reduce your food mileage and reducing greenhouse gas emissions from transportation and methods used to preserve produce over long distances and keeping them in season all year round. Local artisan shops also tend to source materials locally, often making an effort to repurpose reclaimed materials.
Sunrise Sanitation provides waste management and recycling services to West Virginia and Maryland residents and businesses.