If you’re looking for ways to reduce your waste, recycle more, or do your part for the environment – a home waste audit is a great place to start! Use your findings to make a plan for reducing the amount of waste you generate at home.
A waste audit can be eye-opening if you don’t usually think about the garbage you generate, and it can be a fun family activity that helps get kids engaged in household chores!
Keep reading for step by step instructions for conducting a waste audit at home!
Decide how long you want to audit your waste – 1 day, 3 days, maybe a week. During your audit, collect your trash in one area. Use separate containers for garbage, recycling, food waste, and bathroom waste (like used tissues and diapers). It’s ok if you’re not sure if something is recyclable – that’s what the Recycle Coach app is for. And if you don’t already recycle, now is the perfect time to start!
Make sure everyone in your household knows about the audit and start collecting your waste in those containers for the timeframe you chose.
Bring all the waste you collected to an open area so you can spread out. You might be surprised at what you find. Maybe some items could have been reused or donated or got put in the wrong container. Create destination piles – reuse, recycling, donation, drop-off sites, and garbage. Include a compost pile if have a compost bin.
Can you find ways to reduce your household’s waste? Here are some examples:
Plastic shopping bags - bring your own bags to the store. Produce bags too!
Single-use products - purchase items that can be used over and over again instead.
Choose recyclable packaging over non-recyclable packaging.
Adjust your meal planning and grocery shopping habits to reduce food waste.
Reducing, reusing, and recycling means you conserved resources and energy, reduced pollution, and saved landfill space!