Eulalie Ruelle, USAG Benelux Environmental Division
CHIEVRES AIR BASE, Belgium – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle: You may have heard these words since childhood, or at least in recent years due to the growing public awareness of environmental issues.
But have you ever wondered how you can incorporate the 3 Rs principle into your daily life?
Over the past few years, the negative impact of our current lifestyle on the planet has been well documented in awareness campaigns and media.
The extraction and processing of the materials, fuels and foods we need in our daily lives currently account for half of the world’s total greenhouse gas emissions. Furthermore, gas emissions from plastic production are expected to double in decades if nothing changes.
Given rising population levels, it is estimated that by 2050, three planets will be needed to sustainably support the needs of the global population if consumption continues at current rates.
One way to address these issues is through recycling and the introduction of a circular economy. A circular economy is a model of production and consumption that reuses, repairs, shares, leases, refurbs and recycles existing products and materials for as long as possible.
Recycling rates have risen to 34% in the US and 46% in the European Union, but we still need to grow and improve.
The US Army, by executive order, has a recycling target of 50% in 25 fiscal years and 75% in 30 fiscal years.
Here at the Benelux Army Garrison, we have already exceeded expectations. Garrison recycled his 81.6% of waste in FY22. We plan to continue to improve on these achievements.
As individuals, there are many simple things we can do every day to reduce our product consumption and waste generation.
– A great place to start is not buying too many things. Before you buy anything, ask yourself if you really need the item or if it will be used once or twice before it is left in the cupboard or thrown in the trash.
– Buy local and organic food to consume less fuel and pesticides.
– Buy in bulk to reduce overall packaging waste. One large bottle uses less plastic than two small bottles. Some products, such as fruits and vegetables, can be purchased without packaging.
– Another source of trash is takeaway or carry-on food. Bring reusable coffee cups, shopping bags, water bottles, and metal or wooden cutlery instead of using disposable items to avoid creating waste.
– There are many steps you can try before throwing an item away. Use your imagination and try upcycling by repainting, refurbishing, or repurposing old items.
– If you have broken items, you can have them repaired or you can fix them yourself. Being reusable and not having to buy new things is good for the planet and your wallet.
– Buy from second-hand stores whenever possible. This also keeps items from going to landfills and saves you money. There is almost certainly a thrift store on or near the property where you can purchase or donate items.
– Recycle the item if there are no other suitable options.
– Sort recyclables into appropriate bins. Some materials or larger items may need to be taken to a recycling center.
– Only throw items in the trash as a last resort.
Recycling is important every day, not just one day! But his next two weeks, especially America’s Recycling Day on November 15th and European Waste Reduction Week on November 19th-27th, will be mindful of waste and improving one small thing every day. Please try to
– Learn more about America Recycle Day: https://www.epa.gov/recyclingstrategy/america-recycles-day
– More about European Waste Reduction Week: https://ewwr.eu/
– For more information on the US Army’s recycling initiative, please visit https://aec.army.mil/index.php/protect/recycling.
Find out about recycling in your country
– Belgium | Fostplus: https://www.fostplus.be/en/recycling
– Netherlands | XPAT.NL: https://www.xpat.nl/expat-netherlands/living-in-holland/recycling-and-waste-management/
– Germany | All about Berlin: https://allaboutberlin.com/guides/sorting-trash-in-germany
|Posted on:||11.14.2022 09:39|
|position:||CHIEVRES, WHT, BE|
This work, Recycle for the futuresubject to the restrictions set forth at https://www.dvidshub.net/about/copyright.