Reduce Waste

Large pile of garbage in a dump

Our great grandparents had the right idea. Use it up. Plan before you buy.

Go for the good stuff, even if it costs a little more, and then take care of it. Don’t buy cheap disposables. Get things repaired.

Use real dishes at your co-op, not paper plates and cups, even if it means buying a dishwasher.

Can you hold a swap day in your meeting room? Invite everyone to bring anything they no longer use to see if anyone else would like it. Line up a driver or two to take anything unclaimed to the nearest charity shop at the end of the day.

Is there a place in your co-op for a rack where members can hang current newspapers and magazines? It’s a waste if they’re only read once.

If your members aren’t composting and recycling, ask why. No shame, no blame! Because decisions about what can be recycled are made at the municipal level, sometimes members are confused. What about an education evening to talk about recycling? Serve refreshments.

Try some of these suggestions and come up with your own ideas. Reducing waste can actually be good for the life of your community.

Tip of the Month

Plans in Action

The average co-op with an approved capital replacement plan tucks away more than $3,600 per unit in reserves each year--triple the 2007 amount. Does their future hold better windows? New kitchens? Savings mean more choices.