Americans produce 3x more waste than the rest of the world. Here’s how we can cut back.
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The average American produces nearly 5 pounds of waste material—cardboard, plastic, aluminum cans, and junk mail—each day. The United States creates significantly more garbage than the rest of the world (roughly 3 times more!), and we're running out of places to put it.

Most people are aware that recycling is important, but knowing exactly what and how to recycle properly can be confusing. Let's face it: we are, as a nation, stretched pretty thin in this particular moment; now we have one more thing to worry about? In a word, yes.

Don't worry though, because whether you're new to recycling or have been doing it for years, there is always something more to learn and endless ways you can help. To make saving the planet a little bit simpler, we compiled a list of small things you can do that will make a huge impact.

Acknowledgment. Most of us go about our day without thinking about the garbage we're producing, so simply tuning in to the choices we make is a big step forward. For example, online shopping increased dramatically in 2020, translating into a lot more cardboard boxes, plastic shopping bags, and Styrofoam takeout containers finding their way into households. That is a lot of trash!

Awareness. Buy from brands with a proven track record of environmental responsibility. Select foods in recyclable containers. Take the time to educate yourself on the best eco-friendly grocery stores in your area, and then... actually shop there.


Another piece of the awareness puzzle is knowing how much of an impact you want to make when you shop. By learning about the P&G Good Everyday rewards program and signing up, you can automatically help support initiatives like the Alliance to End Plastic Waste, and do more good.

Photo by Antoine GIRET

Know the rules. Recycling the right way can be confusing, which is why P&G launched How2Recycle labeling across many of their products. The labels can be found on the packages on everything from laundry detergent to diapers, clearly communicating the recycling instructions and removing the hassle and guesswork.

Because different areas have different rules, it's best to familiarize yourself with your town or city's recycling facilities. You can also go online and run a search to find your nearest recycling center.

Break it down. Did you know that it's frowned upon to toss milk jugs that aren't rinsed out into the recycling bin? There are a lot of little, yet important, things to do before an item gets recycled: removing the metal lids from glass bottles and jars, removing the lids from metal cans, rinsing out cartons and jugs, removing packaging tape, and throwing away plastic bottle caps.

Don't toss anything into the recycling bin inside of a plastic bag, and break down boxes before inserting them into the bin.

Take it a step further. According to P&G, "Shoppers worldwide use 500 billion single-use plastic bags each year, which often become part of the estimated 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic debris floating in our oceans. Because they take so long to break down, they contribute to the deaths of more than 100,000 marine creatures each year that get tangled in ocean plastic."

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez

Plastic bags that house dry cleaning, newspapers, and produce can be recycled; so can appliances, lightbulbs, and batteries! Consider skipping the produce bag or bringing reusable bags to the fruit stand instead. You'll look cool, because saving the Earth is cool.

No one said reducing global pollution was easy, but we can definitely make it simpler. By following a few easy steps, each American can reduce the amount of waste they produce. Imagine how drastically the state of our planet would improve if everyone worked together.

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Turn your everyday actions into acts of good every day at P&G Good Everyday.

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When a pet is admitted to a shelter it can be a traumatizing experience. Many are afraid of their new surroundings and are far from comfortable showing off their unique personalities. The problem is that's when many of them have their photos taken to appear in online searches.

Chewy, the pet retailer who has dedicated themselves to supporting shelters and rescues throughout the country, recognized the important work of a couple in Tampa, FL who have been taking professional photos of shelter pets to help get them adopted.

"If it's a photo of a scared animal, most people, subconsciously or even consciously, are going to skip over it," pet photographer Adam Goldberg says. "They can't visualize that dog in their home."

Adam realized the importance of quality shelter photos while working as a social media specialist for the Humane Society of Broward County in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

"The photos were taken top-down so you couldn't see the size of the pet, and the flash would create these red eyes," he recalls. "Sometimes [volunteers] would shoot the photos through the chain-link fences."

That's why Adam and his wife, Mary, have spent much of their free time over the past five years photographing over 1,200 shelter animals to show off their unique personalities to potential adoptive families. The Goldbergs' wonderful work was recently profiled by Chewy in the video above entitled, "A Day in the Life of a Shelter Pet Photographer."

Vanna White appeared on "The Price Is Right" in 1980.

Vanna White has been a household name in the United States for decades, which is kind of hilarious when you consider how she gained her fame and fortune. Since 1982, the former model and actress has made millions walking back and forth turning letters (and later simply touching them—yay technology) on the game show "Wheel of Fortune."

That's it. Walking back and forth in a pretty evening gown, flipping letters and clapping for contestants. More on that job in a minute…

As a member of Gen X, television game shows like "Wheel of Fortune" and "The Price is Right" send me straight back to my childhood. Watching this clip from 1980 of Vanna White competing on "The Price is Right" two years before she started turning letters on "Wheel of Fortune" is like stepping into a time machine. Bob Barker's voice, the theme music, the sound effects—I swear I'm home from school sick, lying on the ugly flowered couch with my mom checking my forehead and bringing me Tang.

This video has it all: the early '80s hairstyles, a fresh-faced Vanna White and Bob Barker's casual sexism that would never in a million years fly today.

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