Why Should We Recycle?
Resources on Earth are limited. Plastic bags, paper, electronics, glass, buildings, and every material manufactured comes from naturals resources. Man made products consume energy and resources to produce materials, and recycling can transform our old used products into material for new useful products. Recycling has numerous environmental benefits as well, as we are conserving our energy resources, reducing global warming, and lessening the effects of air and water pollution.
Following are the 4 most important reasons of why we should recycle:
Cut Back On Pollution
The more we recycle, the less materials have to be produced by manufacturing factories. Factories that produce metals and plastics exhaust large amounts of harmful gases into the atmosphere every day. When using recycled products, manufacturing processes generate substantially less water and air pollution that manufacturing from raw materials. According to the Bureau of International Recycling (BIR), recycling paper reduces water pollution by 35% and air pollution by 74%. Recycling household items like batteries helps keep toxic metals like mercury from being released into our air and water.
Using recycled material in the manufacturing process greatly reduces the amount of energy required to create new products. More energy is required to extract, refine and process raw materials than is necessary to manufacture recycled products that have already being through the extracting and refining processes. According to the BIR, it takes 65% less energy to manufacture recycled paper, 80% less energy to manufacture recycled plastic, 95% less energy to manufacture aluminum and 50% less energy to manufacture recycled glass.
Landfills are Becoming Scarce
We are running out of areas that can be used as landfills. Waste from existing landfills is overflowing into areas adjacent to it, which are affecting the environment and wildlife that surround them. The size of the landfills can be significantly reduced if we reduce our daily waste by consuming less and recycling what we can.
Conservation of Natural Resources
Recycling is an important measure to conserve Earth’s natural resources. Every new man-made product is made with raw materials that come from harvesting the earth’s natural resources. When we recycle, old used products become new products, and the need for harvesting natural resources decreases. According to the BIR, recycling 1 of ton paper saves 31 trees and recycling 1 ton of steel saves 1,000 kilograms of iron, 630 kilograms of coal, and 55 kilograms of limestone. Recycling paper would reduce deforestation, which would also reduce the extinction rates of thousands of endangered species.
Where Can We Recycle?
Most cities have recycling programs that serve your local area. Check your local authority for recycling centers in your community, and check your local grocery and department stores. In your own home, have recycling bins for paper, plastic, glass, aluminum cans and compost. You can take these bins to your local grocery and and other recycled items to department stores and recycling centers
What Can We Recycle?
In addition to recycling paper, plastic, glass, and aluminum cans, you can recycle household items like car batteries, regular every-day use batteries, cell phones, ink cartridges, computers and bicycles. You can get cash for recycling items that you would otherwise throw away.