3 simple ways to reduce, reuse and recycle in 2018

3 simple ways to reduce, reuse and recycle in 2018

Happy New Year and welcome to 2018, the land of opportunities where there’s no such thing as 2017.

A new year comes with new hope and new opportunities for self-improvement. Most people are planning to get healthier, to save their pennies for bigger and better things or to see their families and friends more.

The UK Daily Telegraph found 38% of people make the resolution to exercise more.

According to Business Insider, 80% of resolutions fail by February.


We’ve decided to promote a simpler, more manageable and environmentally friendly resolution for 2018. We want to reduce, reuse and recycle to lessen wastage in Australia and create a cleaner, healthier earth for future generations.

Want to join us? We’ve thrown together three simple ways to reduce, reuse and recycle in 2018 to make the process easier.

#1. Be more proactive and committed to recycling

Aussies have a great reputation for recycling.

The Planet Ark Environmental Foundation discovered 85% of Australians think recycling is the right thing to do and 51% of household waste is recycled with most suburbs committing to a two or three bin system.

However, we can still be doing a lot more to reduce waste.

Planet Ark released a report finding 48% of Aussies are confused about what’s recyclable and what’s not, causing a third of landfill waste bins to contain recyclables and green waste.

If we’re going to reduce waste, we need to be better educated.

Different local councils accept different types of recyclable items. Check in with your local council by phone or via their website to make sure you’re recycling the most you can each fortnight!

#2. Get thrifty and go op shopping in 2018

There are some wickedly fun ways to reuse and recycle.

Op shopping is one of the most entertaining weekend activities around. You can find forgotten diamonds, cheap vinyl records, old high-end fashion labels and some of the funkiest hats you’ve ever seen.

I mean, let’s face it – previous generations had wild fashion sense and it’s coming back around.

Look outside, it’s the 1990s all over again.

Op shopping is fun, adventurous and not too tough on the bank account while also reducing waste for the environment.

Australians buy an average of 27 kilograms of new clothes and textiles each year and then discard around 23 kilograms into landfill.

Two thirds of those textiles are made of man-made synthetic fibres and fabrics which may never break down. We’re slowly damaging the environment by throwing away old clothes.

Image source: Greenpeace

Want to take a challenge and reduce waste? Shop for clothing and homewares at op shops alone for 2018. You could save hundreds of dollars and reduce your impact on the environment while giving old items new love!

Don’t forget to donate old clothes, toys and homewares to your local Samaritans store and share the joy of affordable shopping with disadvantaged individuals.

Not sure about the commitment? No worries! You can participate for a few weeks in October for Buy Nothing New Month (BNNM). The challenge discourages participants from buying anything new for a whole month (excluding foods, drinks, medications and hygiene products) to raise awareness about conscientious consumption.

BNNM isn’t about going without or quitting shopping forever. Nope, instead it encourages people to think “do I really need this?” and consider whether it can be bought at an op shop or borrowed from a friend.

You can take the BNNM pledge here and make sure to check out our guide to the best op shops in Newcastle!

#3. Say “no” to plastic bags and shop with sustainable shopping bags

Ever had a shopping bag tear apart and drop groceries all over the floor?

Yep, it’s time to ditch the plastic bags.

Single use plastic bags are made from petrochemicals which pollute the environment when the bags are produced and then refuse to break down naturally once they’re discarded.

Some Aussie states are taking steps towards reducing single use bags – Western Australia has even planned a ban on plastic bags from mid-2018 to protect the environment!

Plastic bags are flimsy, harmful for the environment and dangerous for wildlife.

Tens of thousands of whales, birds, seals and turtles are killed each year from consuming plastic bag litter which they mistake for food.

We can reduce plastic bag waste and protect the environment from further harm by saying “no” to single use bags and committing to sustainable shopping bags.

Megastores like Coles, Woolworths and ALDI offer canvas bags to reuse for groceries and online stores like Echolife Australia sell reusable bags for fruit, veggies and nuts for as little as $15.00.

Reduce your effect on the environment and pick up some recyclable shopping bags in store or online. You could be saving the little baby turtles (and your groceries from the floor).

Reduce, reuse and recycle for a more sustainable 2018

Creating a healthier, cleaner and more beautiful planet should a priority for everyone on the planet…

…Why not make it your New Year Resolution?

There are countless fun, simple and affordable ways to reduce waste production.

  1. Get educated about recycling and bring down the rate of recyclable products in landfills
  2. Get your friends together and go on an op shopping adventure (plus drop off donations to clear space in your home)
  3. Get some canvas shopping and mesh produce bags for fruits so you can ditch plastic bags and save the ocean ecosystem

Make it your goal to reduce, reuse and recycle for a more sustainable earth in 2018!