“Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” is a familiar Zero Waste mantra, but all too often we focus on “recycle” and forget the other R’s of sustainability: refuse, reduce, and reuse. Finding ways to buy used instead of new products and then extending the lives of those products before recycling them saves a lot of energy, conserves natural resources like forests, reduces greenhouse gas emissions, and saves money!
One big reuse opportunity that deserves much more attention is in the area of construction and demolition materials. Construction and demolition creates LOTS of waste. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that more than 136 million tons of debris is generated annually from construction and related activities, and much of this supposed waste could be reused.
Fortunately, we have excellent Zero Waste facilities in Boulder County, including ReSource Central, a project of the Center for ReSource Conservation, which facilitates the reuse of architectural and other building materials through donation and resale. ReSource also offers deconstruction consulting services to help you plan your project to save as many materials as possible for reuse. ReSource Central is co-located with Eco-Cycle’s Center for Hard-to-Recycle Materials (CHaRM) at 6400 Arapahoe Road in Boulder, so you can drop-off your hard-to-recycle materials and shop at ReSource Central all in the same trip!
ReSource Central accepts for donation and resells a long list of items, including cabinets, doors, windows, hardware, lumber, bathroom fixtures, appliances, lighting, furniture, and landscape material. With all these different materials, going to ReSource Central is like visiting a grown-up playground for the Do-It-Yourselfer!
In the pursuit of reducing the amount of products we as consumers are buying and eventually disposing of, ReSource also runs a tool-lending library. This works like a public library except that instead of books to check out, you will find more than 800 tools. To start borrowing tools, all you have to do is fill out a membership form. A one-year membership is $25; renewals are $20 annually. The price to rent tools varies from one dollar for basic hand tools to $45 for jackhammers.
Speaking of tools, ReSource Central welcomes tool donations and offers major tool sales throughout the year, making it easier for you to find the tools you need without having to buy them new. The next sale is scheduled for Saturday, November 18th, from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm at the ReSource Central store.
Learn more about ReSource Central at: https://resourcecentral.org/resource/
KGNU will bring you recycling tips and covering zero waste issues throughout the year in partnership with Eco-Cycle, thanks to a grant from Boulder County.