The Four Rs

Have any of you ever heard of the 3Rs? Can you name them? Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. We want you to manage your waste in that manner. At the Solid Waste Authority of Palm Beach County, we've added a fourth R – Rethink! – because before you throw anything away, we're asking that you rethink your waste generation.


"Reduce" means to make less waste. How can you create less waste in your life? How can you reduce what you're throwing away? One way to do so is to use reusable grocery bags instead of single-use plastic bags. Plastic bags are made from petroleum, like the oil in your car, and they're not recyclable in your blue or yellow bins.


The next "R" is Reuse. If you can’t reduce an item from your waste, can you reuse it or come up with a creative way to use it again? Examples of creative reuse projects have included turning Capri Sun® pouches, which aren't recyclable, into a purse and utensils have been turned into decorative figurines. Some of us reuse grocery store bags to line our bathroom trash cans or pick up after our pets. What else can you reuse at home?


The word "Recycle" means to take something old and turn it into something new.  It's important for you to "Recycle Right" every day — at home, school, work and play. We use recycled items every day including t-shirts, toys and playground equipment.


We feel that "Rethink!" is the most important of the 4Rs. We encourage you to rethink your waste at every step — from when you buy something new to when you get ready to throw something out. Make the 4Rs part of your life by actively rethinking how you can reduce, reuse and recycle right!

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