It’s that time of the year again, when Americans coast to coast pack up the kids and hit the road for a little R&R. But just because you’re on vacation doesn’t mean you can’t be responsible with your waste. Here are a few things to consider as you plan your trip:
Bottled water may come in handy when you’re on the road, but consider using reusable containers or bottles made from recycled plastic. Estimates indicate that it costs nearly 7 times as much water to manufacture and transport a single bottle of water produced and bottled for you than it does for you to refill your own reusable water containers. Using your own bottles reduces waste, saves money, and relieves the burden of recycling along the way or at the end of your trip.
Most places have some sort
of recycling program. Call ahead or check town websites to see what’s available in the area you’ll be visiting. Be specific with your questions — what sort of materials can be recycled, when and where you can drop off your items, and even whether or not composting is available (for your picnic table scraps!).
If you’re particularly eco-minded and can’t find any local resources, consider bringing your recyclables home with you. Sure, a bin or bag takes up some space in your car, but in return your home community will benefit from the sale of your recyclables by using those funds to offset the cost of the recycling programs.
Ranging from plastic, such as yogurt or lunch meat containers and aloe vera bottles, cardboard boxes, such as toilet paper rolls and toothpaste boxes, or aluminum, such as sunscreen containers, remember that all of these items are recyclable items used on your family vacation!