Monday, December 6, 2010

EcoMonday: Closet Purging, and what to do with it

We've written before about our flooring and how important textiles are to the recycling industry. Textiles can be recycled again and again without much breakdown in quality, but they can sit in landfills for decades, not getting enough sunlight or moisture to break down.

Where does all this cloth go?

So what can you do? Here are a few tips as we head into the holiday season.

  • Freecycle it. Freecycle is a nationwide online network of people who are are constantly "gifting" items to each other. You send out a note describing what you have to give away and wait. (All posts are moderated, and the entire board is watched over very carefully for spammers and other unsavory sorts.) In our experience, you don't wait very long, and your stuff will go to someone who wants it. There are at least four Freecycle groups operating in Philadelphia, according to where you live.
  • Give the gift of an animal. Animal shelters often need old sheets, towels, and blankets to provide warmth to a furry friend. Consider giving your bedding and linens to an animal shelter before you put them in a landfill.
  • Dress someone for success. Dress for Success's Philadelphia branch takes new and gently worn suits to women who are just getting back onto their feet in new careers after economic hardship. The group also provides networking opportunities and career counseling.
  • Get someone to help you. Pottstown-based Recycling Services, Inc. has open community drop-off days for everything from your electronics to your curtains, so take advantage of their open house days and put your stuff in their hands for repurposing into something new.

Now go on--purge your closets, both at work and at home, and know you're doing something good.

What's your favorite way to recycle?

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