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3 Super Easy Ways to GO GREEN

By Lauren Hise
Going green these days is a lot easier than it used to be. It is no longer just putting your bottles and cans in the recycling bin or using your own grocery bags. Here are three easy ways to live green in Atlanta today.
SHOP USED. Shopping second hand is a great way to recycle. Shopping used keeps new items out of production, eliminates packaging waste, eliminates transportation pollution, and keeps things out of the landfill. There are so many ways to shop used that there is no excuse not to. Shopping second hand includes consignment stores, thrift stores, yard sales, swap groups, and trading among friends. Some local resources for shopping used are Baby Love (maternity, baby, and kids consignment) on Boulevard, Value Village (general thrift store) on Moreland Avenue, and Atlanta Kids Exchange (Facebook swap group) at www.facebook.com/groups/atlantakidsexchange.
REUSE BAGS AND BOTTLES. There are multiple resources available now to help us reuse more and reduce waste. Ideas include reusable bags (grocery, lunch, baggie), and using hand towels in the kitchen instead of paper towels. Companies like Itsy Ritzy make snack and lunch bags that can be used for everything from food to toys, eliminating the need for disposable plastic bags. Reusable water bottles are an easy and extremely important step to going green. Plastic bottles are bad for the environment in more ways than you can imagine. Additionally, BPA is used in manufacturing most plastic bottles and has been proven hazardous to human health. Contigo makes great reusable water bottles that don’t leak and are reasonable priced. There are many options online and in stores these days.
RECYCLE AND COMPOST. The City of Atlanta makes it very easy to recycle paper, cardboard, glass, cans, and plastic numbered 1-7 (except Styrofoam) with their curbside recycling program. Throw these items into your city-issued recycling bin, roll it to the curb once a week, and you’re done. The city even offers Recycling Perks to reward customers for their curbside recycling efforts. Find out more at www.atlantaga.gov.
Turn your “spoil into soil” as Compost Wheels would say. Composting is an excellent way to turn the organic waste (fruit and vegetable scraps) from your kitchen into nutrient dense soil for your garden. All you have to do is collect your organic waste in the bucket they provide. Then they retrieve it, turn it into soil, and return it to you; www.compostwheels.com offers more information about how the program works and options available.
Going green helps you save money, live a healthier life, and build a more sustainable world. Take the next step to going green today – and take your children along on the journey too!
Some resources to help with your GREEN transition include www.onegreenplanet.org and www.all-recycling-facts.com.

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