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Abshers, NC Importance of Recycling for Establishing a Healthier Environment

Abshers, NC Recycling Guide

Importance of Recycling
Recycling Centers & Services; Auto Parts Recyclers & Dismantlers; Garbage Collection; Waste Disposal-Hazardous

As a nation, the United States creates 40% of the world’s waste but only recycles approximately 28% of everything it uses. Although 28% is two times more than the U.S. recycled a decade ago, this number could be dramatically higher. There is much need for improvement, especially given the fact that each person in this country produces 1,606 pounds of trash each year. Of that trash, approximately 60-70% could be recycled or reused. That would go a long way in protecting the environment and reducing the amount of trash piling up in landfills.

Making a conscious effort to recycle can significantly reduce the amount of waste generated every year and in turn protect the environment and natural resources. Use the information found in this section to learn the importance of recycling and the significant impact it can have on the planet. A few simple changes can really make a big difference.

Why Recycle?
Recycling Centers & Services; Recycling Equipment & Services

Man carrying recycle basket in office.Recycling means taking something that would normally become waste and turning it into a valuable resource. As we leverage the ability to reuse certain materials over and over again, we will cut down on the amount of waste loading our landfills and keep the environment cleaner.

Recycling Statistics

The need for recycling has never been greater. Current statistics present a strong motivation for recycling and solid rationale on why we need to make a few necessary changes.

  • 2.5 million plastic bottles are thrown away every hour.
  • Every year, enough office and writing paper is thrown away to construct a 12 foot wall stretching from Los Angeles to New York.
  • Approximately one-third of all waste is generated by product packaging.
  • Approximately 44 million Americans eat out for lunch every day of the week.
  • The amount of garbage created by Americans everyday could fill enough garbage trucks, lined end to end, to reach half way to the moon.
  • Each year, Americans use 65 billion aluminum soda cans.
  • With the amount of aluminum cans Americans throw away, our commercial air fleet could be rebuilt every three months.
  • During the holidays, Americans generate 5 million tons of waste – 4 million of that waste is shopping bags and wrapping paper.
  • 4 million tons of junk mail is sent to homes every year. The majority of it in turn is sent to landfills.
  • On average, Americans use 650 pounds of paper every year.
  • 25 million trees could be saved each year if Americans recycled one-tenth of all newspapers.
  • There were 18,500 landfills in 1979. Since then landfills have been reduced by 84%. However, the amount of trash sent to them has grown 80%.
  • Over 100,000 tons of waste is incinerated every day.
  • Americans place three times the amount of pressure on the environment versus the global average.

Make a Difference

  • Recycling aluminum cans saves 95% of the energy used to make a new can from virgin ore. It also produces 95% less air and 97% less water pollution.
  • Over 9 cubic yards of landfill is saved by recycling one ton of cardboard.
  • Recycling one ton of paper saves 17 trees, 3 cubic yards of landfill, 4,200 kilowatt hours, 7,000 gallons of water, 390 gallons of oil and eliminates 60 pounds of air pollution.
  • Every glass bottle recycled saves enough energy to light a 100 watt bulb for 4 hours.
  • Glass never wears out – it can be recycled forever.
  • Californians recycled 10.6 billion aluminum cans in 2003 equating to 2 out of every 3 cans.
  • Recycling one aluminum can saves enough energy to run a 100-watt bulb for 20 hours, a computer for 3 hours or a TV for 2 hours.
  • Recycling 1 ton of plastic saves 1-2 thousand gallons of gas.
  • Motor oil does not wear out, it just gets dirty. Recycling it allows it to be used again and again.
  • Recycling 1 ton of aluminum cans saves the energy equivalent of 1,665 gallons of gasoline.
  • Aluminum cans produced in the United States typically contain at least 50% recycled content.
  • The majority of bottles and jars contain at least 25% recycled glass.
  • States that have bottle deposit laws also have 35-40% less litter by volume.
  • The amount of steel recycled annually is enough to supply the City of Los Angeles with almost a decade worth of electricity.
  • The recycling of 125 aluminum cans saves enough energy to power a home for one day.

Recycling Benefits
Recycling Centers & Services; Environmental & Ecological Equip Services

As we begin to recycle, we will reap local environmental and financial benefits as well as cut down on global warming pollution which, in turn, benefits the planet.

Protect the Environment: Air quality is protected as recycling decreases the amount of waste sent to landfills and incinerators. The amount of manufacturing is reduced which further protects air quality as factories run less often.

Protect Natural Resources: Using fewer quantities of virgin materials conserves natural resources such as trees, water and minerals. Trees in forest. Factories also generate more air pollution using virgin materials versus recycled materials.

Protects Nature: Using fewer natural resources protects forests, wildlife, water sources, riverbeds, and wetlands.

Reduces Energy: Recycling reduces the amount of energy needed to create products from virgin materials. This keeps overall energy costs down and avoids higher costs from being passed on to the consumer to offset higher energy costs.

Protect Jobs: The recycling industry has grown to become a $236 billion a year industry employing over 1.1 million workers. Building the industry will create more jobs and facilities providing financial security for millions of Americans.

Protect Economy: Other companies rely on the raw materials created by recycled products to make their own products. This keeps production and end-user costs lower which protects their bottom-line and provides the longevity needed to sustain the economy.

Protect Future Generations: Being smarter about the amount of waste we generate and reusing resources creates a more sustainable environment for future generations.

How to Recycle
Recycling Centers & Services; Auto Parts Recyclers & Dismantlers; Garbage Collection

Proper recycling is more than just using blue collection bins. Deciding to become more recycling conscious should occur prior to discarding an item. Consideration should begin before it is even purchased. Review the following actions you can incorporate into your daily routines to make recycling more of a habit.

Smart Shopping: Look for products that contain recyclable materials. Also ensure the products and packaging you purchase contain a percentage of post-consumer recycled content.

Buy in Bulk: Purchasing products in bulk not only provides a greater savings for the cost of the item itself; it reduces the amount of packaging to be discarded.

Make it Convenient: Make it easier to recycle by placing multiple bins around your home or office and make them easily accessible. Follow the guidelines outlined by your city or county and label cans accordingly to ensure items are properly discarded.

Reuse Items: Before throwing it away, determine if it can serve another purpose. Old containers are good storage devices or a plastic bottle can be converted into a funnel. Man washing reusable household items.Send used clothing, furniture, electronics, computers and televisions to thrift stores or local charities. Post them on Craig’s List or eBay and try to give them another life. Some manufacturers offer take-back or incentive programs for certain electronics.

Start a Compost Pile: Recycle yard trimmings, food scraps and other organic material by turning it into something valuable for your yard.

Bring Your Own Bag: When shopping at the mall or your local supermarket, bring your own bag to take home purchases. Only 1% of all plastic bags distributed at supermarkets or malls every get recycled.

Buy Rechargeable Batteries: Keep toxic materials out of the landfills by purchasing rechargeable batteries. Rechargeable batteries and charger.Not only will it keep costs lower by reducing the need to frequently purchase batteries, it eliminates toxic lead from entering landfills and possibly our ground water.

Research Recycling Opportunities: Each community offers a variety of recycling centers and businesses that will take used items or recycle specialized materials. Find out what programs are available in your area or if programs are limited, start one! The Curbside Collection and Drop-Off section of this guide provides program listing in various geographic areas. Visit this section to find programs in your area.

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