Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

How To

Reduce, reuse, recycle: a phrase familiar to most of us. It’s origination was designed to teach the youth and much of America how to reduce the rate of our landfill usage, as well as lowering our consumption to a more sustainable level. Fortunately most of us have not gravitated past these simple concepts. What was meant to be a catchy reminder has also served to convince a large percentage of the American population that we have things under control if we just follow these three simple steps.

While all of these steps are useful and necessary with expanding populations and limited resources, it also inadvertently oversimplifies our responsibility.  Simply reducing our usage, reusing products, and sorting out recyclables from our garbage is not enough to make the impact that the original message is seeking to achieve.

When we know better, we can do better. Here are some other pertinent ways we can have a positive affect on our resource availabilities and waste containment crisis that go in Tandem with the primary three R’s.  

Reduce our usage by consuming less

Reuse products multiple times

Recycle the waste that can be utilized again

Reevaluation of our needs versus unnecessary commodities

Reflection of our practices in the agriculture industry

Repurpose our lawns from ornamental to functional 

Repair broken policies that undermine effective environmental law

Refurbish used items instead of replacing them

Reclaim our natural resources from corporate control

Remediate invasive overgrowth in areas where native populations are suffering

Replace inefficient setups with modern energy efficient equivalents

Raise our own animals that we want to consume to maintain higher care standards

Reap our own garden to lower the cost and loss of transit systems in importation

Ration our available land for public or private development

Readjust our role in the food chain 

Rebound our endangered species populations through better captive breeding programs and sustained genetic diversity

Realize our carbon footprint is manageable and reversible

Rebuild our delicate ecosystems by lowering the dependency on cash crops

Recall restrictive legislation negatively impacting individualized efforts of self sufficiency

Recharge our aquifers to resist saltwater intrusion and further sinkhole development

Reclaim our environmental pollutants by developing better extraction equipment

Recognize our differences as advantageous opportunities to see the world from different perspectives to confer in a greater cumulative balance with nature

Read peer reviewed journals to stay up to date on the latest scientific inquiries and discoveries before theyre filtered through niche interest groups

Recompose our emotions and take our bias out of our planning process to find the best available options despite our perspective preferences

Reconcile our focus on the present to include more reflection of the past and planning for the future.  Being narrow sighted leads to short term successes but long term failures.  

Reconsider our approach with poaching in impoverished populations to include promoting alternative opportunities instead of just criminalizing hunting

Record our success to allow others to recreate our accomplishments in their native environments.  Nature is a community of beneficial interconnections and our information exchange should be also.  

Recover our heritage and our early relationship with the world around us

Recreate our self image from consumers to producers, from user to creators.  

Rectify our prior actions by taking responsibility for them and working with the next generation to foster change.  

Redeem our unethical captivity of animals by transitioning all facilities into habitable educational programs and breeding lines for species preservation and reintroduction campaigns

Redistribute access and rights to local resources for indigenous populations and native wildlife’s consumption.  

Rediscover more sustainable alternatives to our more difficult or destructively farmed current cultivars

Redo our nutritional suggestions to broaden our accepted dietary options

Reestablish displaced wildlife populations due to underplanned development projects

Refill our bays and oceans with strategically farmed lush marine vegetation

Refine our palettes to include more sustainable alternatives that our taste buds aren’t commonly used to

Reflect on our current treatment of agricultural workers

Reform a localized growth pattern for the agricultural industry 

Refuse products that are not ethically sourced, mined, farmed, cultivated, and extracted

Regenerate our burned lands with new planting and better maintenance to prevent further large scale disasters

Regulate the commercial fishing industry to better allocate for the significantly deceasing marine wildlife populations

Rehabilitate wildlife injured as a direct result of our development, expansion and habitat intrusion

Reject traditional factory farming in favor of a more ethical model of livestock rearing

Rotate your crops:  Certain vegetation requires more or less of certain nutrients and growing a singular type every season will lead to rapid soil depletion and ultimately a failed harvest one day.  However this practice is also responsible for harming soil biology and upsetting microbe populations. 

 

This list is just the beginning.  With every breath, every step, and every choice, we can do better together.