The Cost of Garbage: A Panel Discussion

On August 14, 2019, our Law Clerk attended “The Cost of Garbage: A Panel Discussion” hosted by the Jacksonville Library, Jax Makerspace, North Florida Green Chamber, and Apple Rabbit Compost.

 

Here are a few tips and tricks that we learned regarding recycling:

**Kind of like the weather, what you can recycle depends on where you are. If you do not know if an item is recyclable where you are, Google it!

**Keep recycling items loose (bags are the number one contaminate for recycling), empty, clean and dry! Contaminated items will end up in the landfill.

**Remember recycling is a market-driven industry. Your recycling stream can only take what it can sell.

**Just because it isn’t recyclable at your house, doesn’t mean it can’t go somewhere to be recycled. Look for local and regional businesses that recycle things such as electronics and plastic bags.

 
Here are a few tips and tricks that we learned regarding composting:

**40% of the US food supply is wasted.

**Anything that was once alive can be composted! That, however, doesn’t mean it should be composted

**Watch for items that can only be composted in a composting facility. Those will not break down in your personal compost.

**Shop in season, rotate the food in your pantry and fridge to ensure that you use older items first and look up recipes with whole ingredients in mind. (ex- pickling watermelon rinds instead of throwing them out, using the tops of carrots, etc)

**If you live in an apartment, are unable to compost, or just don’t want to do it on your own- look for a community compost that you can join!

**Florida is topsoil poor. Composting can actually be a huge help in Florida!

 
Remember the 5 Rs. Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Rot. Recycling still takes energy and resources. It’s always best to refuse first or use reusable items! Don’t be afraid to bring your own cup, your own utensils, and your own containers with you versus using the to-go or disposable options!
By working together, looking for innovative solutions in our respective fields, sharing our knowledge,  and leading by example, we can help make our communities stronger and greener!