Used coffee filters . . .

My grandma is from a time and place where anything and everything had more than one use, one purpose.

With climate change, we are increasingly being encouraged to look at daily habits with a critical lens–how much waste are we producing, how much waste can we prevent, what can be saved, what can be reused.

As a child, I learned repeatedly to: recycle, reuse, reduce.

All of these things have inspired me to re-examine and re-imagine some habits to help the environment. At times these simple and creative solutions have allowed me to save money, not just feel good about my efforts. So with that in mind let me offer some ideas on how I have approached my coffee consumption.

Today’s spotlight: coffee filters.

A coffee filter has been used, now what?

  • Use it again. Dump the grounds and reuse–especially if it’s the same coffee brand and flavor. Filters have a shelf life of several uses, not just one.
  • Save them for craft projects. Let them dry and set them aside for some painting. It’s a cheap canvas, but it works.
  • Line the bottom of your planter pots. It helps keep the water in.
  • Deodorize. Pour out some baking soda on the filter, bundle and seal with a rubber band, place it where it stinks (i.e. shoes).
  • Add the filter and grounds to your compost.

It’s not a comprehensive list but it’s a list to spark your imagination. So much of what we do and use has a much longer shelf life, and more than one purpose. As you think about your daily habit, consider what you can do to help curb any environmental impact–every little bit counts, even something small like a few coffee filters adds up quickly.

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