10 Simple Steps to Reduce Waste and Pollution

Monday, February 1st, 2021 by Kristen Owenby

Everyone can do their part in combating pollution. Little changes add up, particularly when they become habits. Keep reading to learn 10 simple ways you can reduce waste and lessen your impact on the planet.


  1. Instead of throwing out scraps, like fruit and vegetable peels, bread, cereal, tea leaves, coffee grounds, eggshells, and shredded newspaper, compost them. Composting not only reduces waste, but enriches the soil.
  2. Get a reusable shopping bag. Many grocery stores offer reusable shopping bags, or you can buy your own elsewhere. Keep them in your car so you’ll remember them the next time you go shopping.
  3. Donate items; purchase secondhand. Instead of buying new items, see about visiting a KARM store or Goodwill. You can keep items from ending up in a landfill while also saving money.
  4. Use metal or paper straws. Plastic straws are disastrous for the ocean, and it’s estimated that 500 million are used every day—with the majority ending up in our waters.
  5. Ditch plastics. Use glass containers or reusable water bottles.
  6. Recycle paper, cans, cardboard, food containers, and glass bottles. Not all of these are collected via curbside pickup, but an internet search should yield drop-off locations in your area.
  7. Read digital magazines and pay bills online. Most companies have gone digital, so there’s no need to purchase magazines or pay paper bills.
  8. Buy a special mug for coffee instead of using a paper or Styrofoam cup.
  9. Avoid purchasing hazardous materials, which are difficult to dispose of responsibly.
  10. Don’t throw out your electronics. These items are comprised of valuable resources, and they release greenhouse gasses when sent to landfills. Look for tech recycling centers in your area.


If everyone implemented small changes like the preceding suggestions, we could reverse much of the damage we’ve caused to our beautiful planet. The Junkluggers of East Tennessee is dedicated to recycling and donating as many items as possible. We hope to keep 100% of the reusable junk we haul out of landfills by 2025. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation estimate.


Sea turtle