#LeedsByExample was launched in 2018 to motivate residents to recycle the packaging used for takeaway foods and drinks.

After some research into what we currently buy new or second hand and what we recycle, it’s now hoped that we will each decide what we are prepared to do to make positive changes to our practices.

So – do you think you could keep more things rather than throwing them away?  Could you avoid buying so much which includes packaging?  What about sharing more things with your family, friends or neighbours – or even the wider community?  If we’re each willing to say how we feel we could help, those responsible for managing the City’s waste – and the resources needed to do that – will be able to make informed decisions because they’ll have accurate information about how we can work together.

Residents of Leeds have been asked to make their choice of 3 ways to save from the following list:

  • Use a reusable coffee cup or water bottle
  • Take my reusable bag when I go shopping and buy stuff with less packaging
  • Try to shop smarter and use up food in my fridge
  • Compost my kitchen food scraps
  • Recycle glass bottles and jars at my local bottle bank
  • Give away any unwanted clothes or recycle them in a textile bank
  • Take electrical items (plus batteries!) to my local recycling centre
  • #LeedsByExample and inspire, persuade and where needed nag my family and friends to recycle more and waste less
  • Swap or share more items with others (e.g. DIY/ gardening tools)
  • And if nothing else… put cans, plastic bottles and cardboard in my green bin.

When 1,000 of Leeds residents were surveyed, two thirds said they would use leftovers, freeze more and plan their shopping better.  One third would buy fewer things and better quality, about half would make compost from their food waste, half would reduce the packaging and around half would buy, or continue to buy, second hand clothing.

From the staggering 600,000 tonnes of waste annually in Leeds alone, glass is recycled to make new bottles and jars, furniture donated helped to furnish almost 700 homes in 2018, and garden waste is added to compost.

It’s thought-provoking – and I for one can’t find a reason not to turn those thoughts into action and make my own small effort towards a huge benefit for society, now and for future generations.

Which 3 would you choose?

You can let #LeedsByExample know on their website here.