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Waste reduction toolkit

Use our waste reduction toolkit for resources that will help your school reduce and reuse.

Waste reduction

Waste reduction - waste prevention – is a simple concept. If we create less waste, we use fewer resources and don't have to spend as much money to recycle or dispose of our waste. We conserve natural resources and save money by decreasing the materials or products needed.

By rethinking, reducing, and reusing, we can reduce greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change. Visit our Re+ (zero waste) page to learn more about zero waste of resources.

Examples of reducing waste include:

  • buying products with no packaging or less packaging
  • making double-sided copies
  • avoiding food waste by eating the food we select for lunch

Examples of reuse include:

  • replacing single-use trays with durable trays that are washed and reused
  • replacing single-use milk cartons with milk dispensers and durable cups

Follow the best practices in the Waste Reduction and Recycling Best Practices Guide.


Classrooms and offices

Cafeteria, kitchen, and breakrooms

  • Pack a waste-free lunch
    Waste-free lunch activities by the EPA to help students learn how to reduce, reuse, and recycle items in their school lunches.