Archive for August, 2014

Renovating and want to be green?

Renovating a home or office building can be an exciting project – molding the place into a new form, turning it into the building you want it to be. However, the amount of trash this produces can be startling: chunks of drywall, old floorboards, pieces of furniture, shattered windows, broken doors. In fact, construction and demolition materials are 36% of all waste produced in Vancouver!

How can all this waste be avoided? Follow the follow steps to keep your renovation clean and green:

  1. Minimize Potential Waste

Before you start your renovation project, plan things out to minimize the potential waste:

  • Whenever possible, rearrange furniture and other objects within the building rather than actually adding or destroying parts of the building itself.
  • Dismantle instead of demolish and salvage what you can. This salvage can be reused by yourself, donated to someone else, or sold to a third party. Many newspapers and community websites have sections where you can announce things you’re giving away.
  • Once you come to the stuff that can’t be reused, make sure to separate them into clearly marked divisions of recyclable and regular waste.


  1. Recycle Whenever Possible

After you’ve dealt with the reusable material, move on to the recyclables. Where should recyclables go?

  • If organic, they can be composted.
  • If small enough, they can be placed in a recycling bin.
  • Scrap metal (steel, copper, etc.) and even appliance may be picked-up by a salvage yard.
  • Anything else can be dropped off at your local recycling center.


  1. Properly Dispose Of What’s Left

All remaining waste should be disposed of properly. Many old houses have various hazardous materials (asbestos, lead paint, mold, etc.), and they should be dealt with in the right way.


For Efficiency, Bring in the Professionals!

As we see, a lot of waste accumulates during demolition, and it’s pivotal that it ends-up in the right place. It’s of course possible for you to handle all the recycling and disposal yourself, but sorting and carting everything is a lot of work. It’s much easier and more efficient to bring in a professional removal company. Make sure the company is one that works with the environment, someone like Fresh Start Recycling & Disposal. We make certain everything gets divided-up correctly – the reusables, the recyclables, the hazardous waste, the regular waste – and once they’re classified, we send them off to the right places ourselves. Thanks to Fresh Start, you can have fun with your renovations and be confident that all your trash will be properly handled.

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What Can You Do About Food Waste?

As we mentioned last week, there’s a lot of food getting wasted these days. This is bad for the environment, for the economy, and for you. A lot of the waste happens when the food is harvested, processed, and delivered, which is why it’s good to research who you’re getting your food from and what they go through to deliver it to you. However, 60% of all food waste happens at the house, restaurant, or wherever else the meal is being made . What can you do to lower all this waste?


  • A compost is an easy way to make certain any food remnants at home returns their nutrients to the earth rather than rotting in some garbage dump. A compost is almost no effort to maintain, just you taking the occasional trip out to the back to toss out a container of potato peels, banana skins, and anything else that needs to go.



  • Don’t waste anything on your plate. Don’t order more than you think you could finish and don’t leave anything behind. If you do have food that you can’t finish, save it as leftovers to eat the next day. The only things that should be going in the trash are what you’re certain you’ll never be able to eat.


Food waste is a terrible thing. However, if you’re careful, you won’t cause much of it. That’s a lesson all of us could learn. Do you have a best left over or produce storing tip? Please share!

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