Whenever possible, try repairing instead of replacement
There’s a good chance that a lot of what we own will one day end up in a landfill somewhere and take years to degrade (click here and here for tables on the amount of time). I’ve often wondered about all of the e-waste that we produce on an annual basis. What happens to the items we discard? Many people don’t recycle paper and plastic, especially if it’s inconvenient. I can’t imagine they think about the other items around their house. We can’t keep putting so much in the ground with an “out of sight, out of mind” attitude because that isn’t in anyone’s long term best interest. Over the last several years, I’ve recycled a television and a couple of computers along with batteries and cords (click here and here for more information on where to go). Recently, when I discovered that the CD player in my stereo system didn’t function properly, I faced a dilemma: pitch it and buy a new one or keep it and go to a local repair shop. I decided to have it fixed largely because I don’t want to further contribute to the growing consumption and disposal problems that we face. People might laugh at me and say “But it’s less expensive to just buy a new one, John.” I guess it really depends on how you look at the situation. To me, the greater cost is the damage that we’re doing to the planet.