Putting Your Trash To The Test

Annie Leonard is the author and host of the online documentary “The Story of Stuff,” which exposes the environmental and social costs of current systems of production and consumption.

She portrays the consequences of “stuff” in an easy-to-digest format and makes it impossible not think about where our daily waste goes.

Inspired by this idea, Amy Dufault, contributing writer for The Cape Cod Times, decided to measure all the trash her family created in just one week.

She says:

“Sure, there was probably less trash than there would be in many homes, thanks to our heavy recycling efforts. But with two children, ages 11 and 8, a husband and a remodeling project, we still collected a lot.

By Sunday night, in just 48 hours, we had three half-full barrels of trash.”

Read the rest of the adventure here.

But what about you? Think you and your family could measure your trash for a week? As Amy said at the end of her experiment, “I realized anew after my trash-collection weekend that we can never underestimate the power of one family recycling. We could each make a difference in the amount of garbage we create at home, or when we’re traveling.”

So check out Annie Leonard’s “The Story of Stuff” and take a cue from Amy’s family: Think about what you can do at home to help conserve.

(And did you know that “The Story of Stuff” is now available in Spanish? Check out “La Historia de las Cosas.” )