A couple weeks ago, I substituted for a 7th-8th grade class, whose topic for the day was recycling. I asked if they knew what the three R's for the environment were, and surprisingly, they only knew reduce and recycle.
Our educational system needs work.
I've lived outside the United States for a couple months at a time, and every time I was struck by how little waste other countries produce on a day-in, day-out basis. And it's not because they recycle more than we do, though certainly they seemed to be masters at recycling.
The third R is probably one that a lot of clients notice because I reuse packing materials that I receive. A lot of my larger orders are packaged in old shipping boxes from any of one of my suppliers. Sometimes, smaller orders will go out in Amazon boxes. I keep all those plastic air pillows and bubble sheets to pack things in. I keep a small amount of packing popcorn here and bring the rest to a local mailing station where they'll reuse it to pack other customer's items. It's just good business to do this because not only does it help the environment, but it saves me time and money, which I can spend on making my letterpress products the best that they can be!
But reusing things doesn't stop at packing materials. Around the shop, I reuse everything possible. Shop rags, bad prints, boxes, strips of paper, sometimes even pieces of tape. Every little bit helps!