Back to School the Eco-Friendly way

September is a new term and time to think about the three Rs - that’s Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!

Moving from a #SustainableSummer to #BackToSchool, we're on hand to help with a whole host of eco-friendly, money saving tips that won’t cost the Earth.

Thalia Waste Management knows the start of a new academic year can be stressful and expensive, with school uniform and equipment to buy, while trying to do our best to save the planet. With a little thought, thoughts of second hand, and a few tweaks and swaps, it is possible to have a journey back to school that is kind to the planet and your pocket.

Here’s Thalia Waste Management’s top ideas to start Back to School:

  1. Plan ahead - What do they already have? What do they need? Children grow at an alarming rate so uniform will be a must, but it doesn’t have to be new. Second hand uniform is not just earth-saving, it’s money-saving too. Is a new maths set or pencil case needed at the start of every year? If it’s in reasonable condition, keep using it.
  2. Recycle or donate anything you don’t need. Preserve Earth’s resources - if buying new is necessary, look for items with minimal packaging, made from recycled materials and durable. As well as stationery and school bags, make eco-friendly choices when buying technology. Reconditioned laptops and tablets are usually just as good as new ones and can cost less. Do research and buy from a reputable company.
  3. Heading for the shops? Take a reusable bag!
  4. Healthy Habits - Encourage children to walk or cycle to school or college. Kinder for the planet and healthier. Start a ‘walking school bus’ – take turns to supervise children walking to school. A wonderful way for them to make new friends and cuts down car journeys. Need to drive? Don’t forget to turn off the engine when waiting and encourage others to do the same.
  5. Zero Waste Lunch – One of the easiest ways to be greener, healthier and save money. Think fresh and homemade rather than packaged and processed. Planning avoids last minute grabs for quick and easy snacks, which can be less healthy, wrapped in plastic and more expensive. Choose a container that lasts and can be recycled when it finally needs to be replaced. And, if things need to be individually wrapped, invest in re-usable bags or beeswax wraps rather than single-use bags, foil, or plastic wrap.
  6. Not just for the kids, make your lunch waste-free too!

At Thalia Waste Management we know some waste is unavoidable and that’s when we step in - treating household waste in a safe and environmentally sustainable way.  At our Allerton Waste Recovery Park facility, we treat all household waste from York and North Yorkshire with over 90% of it diverted away from landfill and generating enough energy to power 40,000 homes.

For more tips and ideas on how to become waste-free or to find out how we transform todays’ household waste into tomorrow’s energy sign up for our Education Experience/ visits (