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NY Offers Tips to Save Money and Help the Environment During Earth Week


In honor of Earth Week, the New York Department of State’s Division of Consumer Protection (DCP) is partnering with the New York Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to share tips that empower consumers to save money and help the environment. Spring cleaning comes with great opportunities to reduce, reuse, recycle, and repair everyday goods. Following simple strategies to reduce consumption, reuse and repair what you own and recycle right benefits the Earth and your wallet too.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Repair this Spring

Reduce & Reuse

Participating in reduction and reuse is simple but the impact is lasting and far-reaching. Reuse benefits our communities and environment in many ways, like decreasing emissions that contribute to climate change, conserving natural resources and stopping waste before it starts. Using what you have instead of buying new also saves money.

  • Choose reusable products over disposable when possible.
  • Buy less and buy better. When making new purchases, choosing more durable options can last longer, saving money and reducing waste in the long-run.
  • Donate and buy secondhand items and materials.
  • Share, lend, and rent items instead of buying new.
  • Skip the spoons! When ordering prepared food and beverages, let food service staff know before ordering if you do not need disposable utensils, condiment packets, straws, etc.
  • Support businesses and products that encourage reuse.
  • Find reuse opportunities with the Recycle Right NY Reuse Locator Tool.


Sometimes items just need a simple repair to avoid getting thrown away. Repairing what we have conserves natural resources, reduces waste and protects the environment, all while saving money in the process. Learning how to make repairs yourself can be fun and empowering. Easy ways to engage in repair include:

  • Look online for repair information: Many websites provide free repair instructions, manuals, and guides for all kinds of consumer products. Search online to see if any guides or tutorials relevant to your product are available. Make sure any source you take any advice from is reputable before attempting to repair yourself.
  • Need a tool? Contact your local recycling coordinator to learn if there is a tool lending library in your community.
  • Take your item to a repair shop. Repair shops will charge you for the fix, but getting the repair often costs less than buying new. Since you will be paying for repairs if you choose a shop, compare prices for available services.
  • Get repair information and parts. Some manufacturers and websites have repair information online for consumers to access and may also have replacement parts and tools available for sale. The New York State Digital Fair Repair Act allows consumers and repair shops to contact the manufacturer for documentation, tools, and parts necessary to maintain or repair certain digital electronics. The New York State Attorney General’s Office enforces the Digital Fair Repair Act. Consumers can file a complaint here.


Most New Yorkers (83%) believe that recycling is important. While residents recycle many items “right,” some items that don’t belong in recycling commonly get tossed in the bin. Incorporate good recycling habits into your spring cleaning by learning about the top 5 most confusing items for New York State residents to recycle.

Remember, you are not alone if you’re confused by recycling rules for some items. With so many different products and materials we encounter each day, it’s no wonder many people are confused about what belongs in the recycling bin. Use these tips to avoid recycling mistakes:

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