The headlines here are quite straightforward.

  1. REDUCE the amount you use.
  2. REUSE product or product elements, wherever possible.
  3. RECYCLE what is left, wherever possible.

The Waste Hierarchy model sets out the levels of options for managing waste in an environmentally helpful way.

It gives top priority to preventing waste in the first place. When waste is created, it gives priority to preparing it for reuse, then recycling, then recovery, and last of all disposal (e.g. landfill – which should be avoided whenever possible).