Today, we're talking mail and the environmental nightmare it has become. Do you ever want to scream at your bulging-at-the-seams mailbox filled with junk mail? Granted, junk mail is better than bills, but that's another topic altogether and I don't want to go there.
Just last week, my husband and I were appalled when we discovered this stuffed into our mailbox:
What to do? What to do? We considered taking them down to the post office and plopping them down on the counter, demanding an explanation. But they'd probably just shrug and we'd be wasting our time. We thought about letting Altmeyer's know because, after all, it was their money that was wasted. But then we wondered if they'd even care.
One thing was certain: we cared. And it bothered us immensely. What would you have done?
Anyway, this takes us back to today's topic: What to do with all that mail?
One thing we've been doing for years and will continue to do. Recycle! There are many organizations, like churches and fire halls, that benefit from the paper we recycle. Did you know that most everything you receive in your mailbox is recyclable? That includes
- catalogues, staples included
- envelopes with plastic windows
- business cards
- even mail with paper clips attached (although I remove them and reuse them in my office)
Paper soiled by food or grease will compromise the other paper in the recycling bin, so please discard it in the trash. Because we're a little bit concerned about privacy, we do rip off or blacken out our names and address before recycling. Shredded mail compromises the fiber of the paper, so it is usually not accepted in the paper recycling bins.
In addition to recycling your unwanted mail, there are also ways to reduce how much you actually receive. You can opt-out of mailing lists by contacting companies and asking them to remove your name from their list. While that is most effective, you can also click here to sign up to reduce your junk mail.
As far as bills are concerned (I know, I wasn't going to mention them), you can always switch to online billing or automatic payments directly from your bank. That, at least, will cut down on some of the more unpleasant things lurking in your mailbox each week.
That's it for this week's Truths and Tidbits. Like I said, I hope you found it useful.
Keeping it green,