REDUCE means trying to use less products in order to have less waste come out of your household. In a series of 7 blogs, the 6 R’s of Sustainability (Review, Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Rethink your Residue) are explained to give practical information about what we as a consumer can do to reduce our ecological footprint by applying these practices in our daily life. 


REDUCE is the third R of Sustainability. The best way to avoid waste and its environmental impact is to reduce the production of materials that become waste in the first place. Generating less waste offers the greatest environmental benefit of all. As a consumer, we can reduce our waste by being critical about what products we buy. We can also consider not to buy, because products can be shared or bought second hand. Below are a few examples of how you can reduce your waste:

In your household consumption:

  • Buy concentrated products or compact packages, such as frozen juices, fabric softeners, and cleaners you mix with water at home.
  • Buy products that do more than one thing—for example, shampoos that include conditioners.
  • Buy a larger container instead of two smaller ones.
  • Look for products with minimal packaging. 
  • Shop local farmer markets. They usually use much less packaging.
  • Buy second hand items and donate used goods.
  • Reduce the amount of printed marketing mailings and magazines that enter the mailbox of your front door unasked for.

In your neighborhood:

  • Share equipment with your neighbors like gardening tools or even a car. You will reduce waste and also save money by setting up a sharing program.

In the office:

  • Try to avoid printing hard copies of your documents. And when you do print, print double-sided. 
  • Donate your old laptop or computer instead of throwing it away.

Your waste is your responsibility

REVIEW your current, REFUSE what you don’t need, REDUCE what you do need, REUSE by using reusables, RECYCLE what you can’t refuse, reduce or reuse, and RETHINK your residue waste, so you can eliminate even more waste.

Next week’s blog will be about REUSE (& REPAIR). Join us in a journey to take responsibility over your own waste!