It’s back to school and back to work time. It’s definitely not back-to-throwing-everything-in-your-dumpster time. At least we hope not.

Every year, the typical American generates over 1,600 pounds in waste - that throwing out more than 10 of you in the trash. In Boston, a lot waste happens in September as people move in and move out.

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(Allston on Move-out Day: Don't Be These Guys)

It's one thing to not throw away waste. But it's another to think about the entire chain of companies and people that turn your waste into something valuable? One of those mechanisms might just be a simple community yard sale - a way of earning extra cash and sharing the use value of your old beanbag chair to another person, as opposed to sending it to an incinerator. Entrepreneurs in Boston are taking it the next level - some of our panelists later this month are turning old, rusted shipping containers into hydroponic farms, or finding value in all those old "Star Wars" t-shirts from middle-school (listen to this NPR podcast to find out!).

We’re hosting a whole series of events on waste and reuse this month on rethinking waste. We hope you can join us.

Waste Disposal Checklist: The Do’s and Don’ts of Dealing with Waste

First, whether you are new to town or a long-time resident, we encourage all Bostonians to know the do’s and don’ts of disposing waste in Boston. Here’s the rundown:

 

First, whether you are new to town or a long-time resident, we encourage all Bostonians to know the do’s and don’ts of disposing waste in Boston. Here’s the rundown:

Do:

  • Know what can and can’t be recycled in Boston. The City has a guide of what you can do here.
  • If you live in a house or apartment, know which days of the week are your pick-up days: http://www.cityofboston.gov/news/Default.aspx?id=10637
  • Recycle your electronic waste in responsible ways. Massachusetts State Department of Environmental Protection has a list of options. If you can’t make it to one of these locations, you can help raise funds for a Boston-based charity by getting a free shipping label here.
  • Use your garbage disposal a.k.a. Insinkerator for food scraps. When food waste goes down the garbage disposal, it’s sent to the wastewater treatment facility on Deer Island and generates renewable energy to power the facility. The more food you send through your garbage disposal, the more renewable energy you can help create!

And some don’ts:

  • Don’t litter. C’mon. What would your mother think? Sometimes, you might litter by accident when you don’t tie your trash and recycling bags tight and put it in a secured place. Let’s keep our streets clean.
  • Don’t put oils, fats, and grease down the sink. This is the leading cause of sewer overflow. Find out more and learn how to properly dispose of oils, fats, and grease:  http://www.bwsc.org/COMMUNITY/prevention/fog.asp
  • Don’t use your neighbor’s waste bins because your apartment doesn’t have any. If your building doesn’t have recycling bins, contact your landlord or property manager and politely ask them to obtain bins - it’s the law! Find out more at http://www.cityofboston.gov/publicworks/wastereduction/recycling.asp

 

Events for September

Community Yard Sale

Got stuff to give away? Want to enjoy a beautiful day? Either host or attend a yard sale with your neighbors from all across Boston.

Saturday, September 13th, and Sunday, September 14th

yardsale.greenovateboston.org

Don’t Waste September: A Panel on Turning Trash to Treasure

Each year, Americans throw out close to 3000 pounds of waste. Come hear about how some Bostonians are reinventing trash as treasure, from transforming unused shipping containers to hydroponic farms, old t-shirts into quilts, and flip phones to gold.

District Hall, Tuesday September 16 from 6-7:30 PM

RSVP here

Speakers include:

Brooke Nash (MassDEP), Municipal Waste Reduction Branch Chief

Brad McNamara (Freight Farms), CEO/Founder, Freight Farms

Ross Lohr (Project RePat), CEO/Founder, Project RePat

Julie Shane (Causes International), CEO/Founder, Causes International

Boston Recycling Coalition’s Community Meet-Up: A Strong and Local Green Economy

Want quality jobs for your community? Enjoy litter-free neighborhoods? Concerned about climate change? Join the Boston Recycling Coalition and city representatives at a Community Meetup on a Strong, Local Green Economy.

Thursday, September 11, 5:30-7:30pm at Dudley Square Public Library.

Join Boston #Recycling Coalition @JohnFBarros for “Strong, Local Green Economy” Community Mtg 9/11 5:30p Dudley Sq Library @CleanH20MA

Learn how better #recycling & #composting in #Boston can help strengthen local economy! 9/11 5:30p Dudley Sq Library @CleanH20MA

Hear local food movement leaders, #ZeroWaste experts at “Strong, Local Green Economy” Community Mtg 9/11 5:30p Dudley Sq Library @CleanH20MA

Reuse Café

What do you do with a toaster that no longer works? Or a sweater with moth holes? Or a chair when the leg has come loose? Toss it? No way! You can repair it at the Repair Café, a free meeting place all about repairing things, together.

Cambridge Community Center, Saturday, September 27, 10 AM – 2 PM

Dispose of your E-Waste Responsibly

Help eliminate harmful e-waste from the environment AND raise funds for a Boston-based charity by shipping your unwanted electronics for FREE! Click here, fill in the form, and receive your label within one business day. Click here to see a complete list of acceptable items.

For more options to dispose of E-waste, click here.

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