I just received my Rethinker quarterly newsletter from RethinkWaste , our local waste management company that educates its clients on ways to reduce waste. I find their tips very helpful and often share them with my clients.

This got me to thinking about all the mail, advertising and catalogs that I never read. It’s not enough to just recycle anymore, what can we do to stop this?

Forty-one pounds…that’s the staggering weight of the 560 or so pieces of junk mail each adult American receives per year. Almost half of it remains completely unopened and unread before heading straight to the landfill. Sadly, recycling junk mail is especially difficult due to the high concentrations of heavy metals used in the inks. Year after year, boreal forests get wantonly turned into garbage as more than 100 million trees and 28 billion gallons of water are wasted in the production of junk mail. This whole frustrating process is perpetuated by everyone, from the USPS to credit reporting companies like Equifax and Experian, selling your name for three to twenty cents a pop to anyone in the market to buy it.

That’s why I was thrilled to see that the Rethinker has already published all the information I need to stop these unwanted solicitations. Since it can take many months to get your name removed from most mailing lists, the time to act is now to prevent the onslaught of holiday junk mail.

You can opt-out of unwanted mail easily by choosing from the many free services online such as:

To stop selective catalogs –  www.catalogchoice.org

To halt mos direct marketing mail – www.dmachoice.com

To end credit card and insurance offers – www.optoutprescreen.com or call 1-888-5-OPTOUT

For a handy junk mail reduction kit – www.stopjunkmail.org