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♻️ Green tip Taille & Retailles: sorting school equipment with 3RVs

Now that school is over, you find yourself with a lot of material coming back from school. You had forgotten that they had brought so many at the beginning of the year, right? 😱

Some are barely used… 🤦 Before throwing everything in the trash or recycling, or storing everything in the 13 file, or in a souvenir box in the basement, here are some eco-friendly (and economical!) ideas for you help manage school materials taking into account your environmental values. 🌿

Take advantage of a rainy day to do some big end-of-year cleaning and get the kids involved! ☔ Because it's important to show them very early on the importance of the 3RVs. Little eco-friendly will become big! 🌱🌳

First R: Reduce ⬇️

For that, you have to get involved upstream. Did you know that the list of school items is approved by the EC of each school, most often shortly after the holidays? 🏫

By participating in the meetings, you will have your say on the 6 Canada notebooks requested for the math class, while each one will only have 6 pages used at the end of the line 📚, or on the boxes of tissues 🤧 shared in common beginning of the year whose reserve stays with the teacher at the end of the year...

You can also choose better quality items so that they last several years: pencil cases, sharpeners, rulers, duo-tang made of plastic rather than cardboard, sturdy binders, etc.

Second R: Reuse 🔄

Backpacks, pencils, erasers, satchels, duo-tangs, sharpeners, rulers can often be reused for over a year. Checks the condition of returned items, tests felt pens, removes 2-3 used sheets from a notebook for reuse, collects a few blank sheets from a notebook for drawing or homework, etc

The unicorn thermos is out of fashion for your big one, but it still keeps food warm? Offer it to a local support group, or to an organization. I'm sure it will make another little girl happy, and her parents on a limited budget! 💞

Third R: Recycle ♻️

Before throwing everything into recycling, make sure it won't be thrown away at the sorting centre. Choose the right materials to put in the bin, and put them in the right way.

For example, spiral bound notebooks can be recycled. 📒 But since there are 2 materials, remove the spiral before recycling. If the spiral is metal, it can be put in the bin. If it's plastic, it goes in the trash. If the notebook is simply stapled, like the Canada notebooks, don't worry: put everything directly in the bin.

For more such advice, review the "On vide sa casse" publications from Tricentris the coop on Facebook :

Used pencils, markers and pens can be recycled, but not in the bin. Many locations, such as Staples, have dedicated drop-off bins for recycling these items. Find out about the drop-off points in your area and drop off everything you can there.

And the V: Value ✌️

Maybe pencils that are too short are just waiting to be used for a work of art, or as a stake to identify carrots in the garden? Could the damaged plastic duotangs be used for a colored stained glass window? It's time to be creative! Who will have the best idea? 🙋‍♀️

And the rest?

Items that do not fall into any of the above categories will unfortunately have to be thrown in the trash. 🚮 There shouldn't be tons of them though. Take the time to see if some of these items could be avoided at source (goes back to first R) for next year. It's a good time to plan your back to school in green mode.

When you're ready to do the back-to-school shopping, pull out the materials you've collected and review the list. You will only have a few items to buy to complete. Eco-friendly and economical: we love it! 💚

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♻️ Do you know what to do with your used textiles?

Since the law prohibiting the use of used textiles for upholstery was repealed last fall, a few textile recycling projects are under development in Quebec. But it is not won yet, far from it. 😶

In the meantime, here is what you can do with your used textiles:

  • ⬇️ Reduce at source: Buy less, better quality, preferably local ⚜️
  • 🔄 reuse : Resell or give away fabrics in good condition that are no longer useful to you
  • ♻️ To recycle : Join a project in development to find new opportunities
  • 🤧 Valuing: Make rags, washable handkerchiefs, tawashis, reusable gift wrap, etc.
  • 🗑️ To throw : Unfortunately, the rest will end up in the landfill, like approximately 50% of textiles used in Quebec each year.

An interesting document to consult to continue your reflection, by Recyc-Québec (2018):

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🌱 Little eco-friendly will become big...

Did you know? Respect for nature, I fell into it when I was little, like Obélix in the magic potion. 😆

My father being a biologist by training, he worked all his life for the Ministry of Environment and Wildlife (and several variations of the name, for the same structure!). 💚 He has worked on the preservation of several species, by studying them, and by participating in the development of guides for the exploitation and protection of forest resources 🌲, hunting 🏹 and fishing 🎣.

From an early age, he taught my sister and me to respect nature, animals, plants and more. It is therefore in my nature to continue on this path. 🌳

I think I have succeeded in transmitting these values to my daughters, since my oldest is going to study environmental sciences when she goes to Cégep, in a little over a year. 💚

And you? How long have you been interested in ecology? Have you started teaching respect for nature to your children? Do you have any tips to share with us?

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Aerosols do not go to the recovery bin ♻️

Even if it's metal and it's a container. 🚫 Even if it was just whipped cream. 🚫 Even if you emptied it well. 🚫 Because it's under pressure, so at risk of exploding 🧨 or catching fire 🔥, either in the transport truck or at the sorting centre. You wouldn't want to cause an accident, would you? 🙅

It must therefore be disposed of at the ecocentre or at a collection point for hazardous household waste. Or better yet, don't use any, when possible. Although I admit that I'm fond of whipped cream spray, it's so good on pancakes or waffles… #plaisircoupable

And you? Can you do without aerosols? Are you disposing of it safely?

Thank you Tricentris for this valuable information, once again

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Need good environmental news? ✌️

You have surely heard of the recycling crisis in Quebec, between 2018 and 2020 when the underdeveloped countries where we sent our poorly sorted “scrap” began to refuse our shipments. 😖 The value of these materials has fallen, the materials were accumulating in the sorting centers, for lack of buyers, a real disaster... 😱

But it forced the sorting centers to improve, to find local outlets for their material, and to create new partnerships. 🥳 In short, we're going to get through this, and it will only be better for the planet! ♻️

Read the full article in La Presse: Recycling crisis – “We took our heads out of the water” in Quebec

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As a reminder, for the runny nose season 🤧

When they were little, my daughters often told me "runny nose", which meant that I had to blow their nose… 🙃 I'm so happy that they are now able to manage their own noses! 🤣 By the way, we've been catching a lot fewer colds since they were in high school. #couragecavafinishbypassing

If you are still in this period with your children, perhaps you hesitate to equip yourself with reusable tissues, given the quantity of tissues that you use in a day with your "little brats". 🤧 Because it's true that buying a series of new reusable tissues is not cheap, even if in the long term, it's much cheaper than disposable ones. 💲

But in fact, there is a super easy way to equip yourself inexpensively: use old clothes to make your reusable handkerchiefs! 😍 You don't even need to know how to sew, and it's so much softer for the nose! 💚 Read the following tutorial for all the details. You'll see, it's super easy!

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Waste reduction starts with purchase 🛍️

Did you know? Among the choices of containers for milk 🥛, the best option is glass, recorded or not. Then, among plastic packaging, the "least worst" option remains the #2 plastic jug, rather than milk pouches. 😯

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The top 7 baccalaureate errors ❌

Because putting only what is recyclable in the bin gives the recyclable material the chance to be recycled more easily and efficiently. ♻️ Bonus if you eliminate these types of packaging or products from your purchases! 😉

The top 7 baccalaureate errors

1. Bags of crisps;
2. Wooden crates of clementines;
3. Worn diapers (!);
4. Long objects (garden hose, garlands);
5. Freestanding pockets (nuts)
6. Plastic packaging that does not stretch (e.g. frozen food packaging – fries, fruits vegetables, pasta wraps, candies)
7. Coffee pods (Psst! Only Nespresso pods are recyclable since they have been thought out in collaboration with sorting centers, not the others!)

Grégory pratte, tricentris – Les radieuses magazine

Like the post if this info was useful to you. 👍

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🙅 Tenacious false belief: The contents of recycling bins end up in the dump.

You've certainly heard people downplaying the importance of putting things in the recycling bin, because "it all ends up in the trash anyway". It is completely false.

In fact, a part (about 21% in 2018) is found there, yes, but mainly because these are materials that shouldn't have been put in the bin in the first place : contaminated materials, hard-to-separate multi-material products, unidentified plastics, tires, toys, etc 🤷

The solution to reduce this share? Education, always education! 👩‍🏫 All the details in this publication from Agence Science-Presse.