Kids Teach Us to Recycle and Reuse!
Hailey is an 8-year-old recycler who really knows how to reduce the amount of trash in the landfills and reuse packaging material in her home. She shows off a home she made for her stuffed pig, Wilbur – cutting the box and adding leftover wallpaper to make him his very own designer pig pen. Best of all, the cardboard from his packaging will not be forced to sit in a landfill for 15 years before decomposing!
Hailey also converted an old glass food jar into a piggy bank. This small action saves the glass from ending up in a landfill for an astounding 1 million years!
What Can I Do To Make a Difference?
You may be wondering, “Where should I start?” Take a look at the City of Novi, Michigan’s rundown of how long it takes for your trash to decompose naturally, which should get the creative gears in your head spinning…
|Napkins||1 – 3 weeks|
|Traffic Ticket||2 – 4 weeks|
|Banana/Orange Peel||2 – 5 weeks|
|Paper Bag||1 month|
|Paper||2 – 5 months|
|Newspaper||3 – 6 months|
|Carry-out Tray||3 – 9 months|
|Rope||3 – 14 months|
|Carry-out Food Bag||4 – 8 months|
|Cotton Rag||5 months|
|Bamboo Pole||1 – 3 years|
|Wool Clothing||1 – 5 years|
|Cigarette||1 – 12 years|
|Styrofoam cups||1 – 100 years|
|Plastic-Coated Paper||5 years|
|Plastic bags||10 – 20 years|
|Painted Wooden Stake||13 years|
|Plastic Film Container||20 – 30 years|
|Nylon Fabric||30 – 40 years|
|Leather Boot||40 – 50 years|
|Rubber Sole (of a boot)||50 – 80 years|
|Leather||up to 50 years|
|Plastic Bottles||70 – 450 years|
|Tin Can (soup or vegetable can)||80 – 100 years|
|Aluminum cans||200 – 500 years|
|Plastic 6-pack Rings||450 years|
|Diapers||500 – 800 years|
|Plastic Jug||1 million years|
|Glass Bottle||unknown? forever?|
You Still Need Help?
If you’re stumped for ideas, you can find many resources online. For instance, PlanetGreen.com lists five uses for just about everything – from old shoelaces and chopsticks to bottle caps and plastic bags.
FamilyFun.Go.Com also has a treasure trove of activities for a rainy day when you’ve got nothing better to do than… oh… save the planet. It may seem like a small step, but if every person in America recycles just one piece of packaging, that saves over 311 million items from cluttering our landfills.
Here at Vocal Trash, we love to see young people who are creative and passionate about conservation. Let us know what projects you’ve been working on to recycle, reduce, reuse and you just might end up in a future episode of the Vocal Trash Street Show!
As always, remember to…
“THINK…Before you THROW IT AWAY!”
Vocal Trash is a troupe of environmental entertainers who have been engaging audiences with their unique and exciting brand of entertainment for a decade from New York to Seattle. Whether in Madison Square Garden or the Venetian Hotel and Casino, Vocal Trash is environmentally conscious using upcycled materials on stage. The group asks that you “THINK… before you throw it away!”