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10 Green Back to School Tips

Whether it’s work or school, here are some practical ways you can get back to the grind and be a little greener this fall — and all year long.

  1. Precycle. Cut down on packaging waste by selecting larger or bulk items instead of individually wrapped foods. For example, cheese sticks, snack packs, and individually bagged items like chips and pretzels.
  2. Shop your local farmers’ markets! Local food doesn’t have to travel by plane or trucks to get to you, gobbling fossil fuels along the way.
  3. Ditch the bags. Use reusable containers when packing lunches instead of plastic bags.
  4. Thirsty? Pack reusable water bottles for lunch instead of plastic disposable bottles.
  5. Pack a lunch. By packing a whole food lunch in a reusable lunch box, you’ll help reduce the amount of paper bags, food packaging, and wasted food you or your child produces.
  6. Take inventory. Before going out and buying all new school supplies, clothes and backpacks, check out what you already have and buy just what is needed.
  7. Buy green supplies. Take your child shopping for recycled, renewable school supplies.
  8. Shop Used. Check out some of Cape Cod’s thrift shops and get your clothing second hand, or organize a clothing swap with family, friends or neighbors.
  9. Walk, ride, or take the bus. If you don’t live close enough to walk to school or work, consider finding a route using the bike path or share a ride with friends!
  10. Keep it going. These tips are great for kids heading back to school, but making personal choices that embrace a sustainable lifestyle should be in practice all year long.

Lastly, if you’re not recycling at your home, workplace, or school, please check out Nauset Disposal’s single-stream recycling program. Single stream recycling makes it easy to be green — all recyclable materials can be co-mingled, so there’s no sorting necessary.