Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Top 5 Items to Recycle (Recycling Pt. 1)

Mixed paper-example
By this point, I'm sure most of us are familiar with the concept of recycling. Certain items can be recycled into new products, lowering the amount of material in landfills and the amount of new materials we must put into products. But which materials can be recycled, and which cannot? Let's find out.

#5: Plastic Containers (PET and HDPE) 

 PET is the most common form of plastic bottle and is used for bottled water, while high-density polyethylene (HDPE) is a denser plastic used for detergents, bleach, and milk jugs. These plastics are more commonly used than other forms of plastic and are usually the easiest to recycle, and yet of the more than 25 billion bottles Americans used in 2012, only about 25 percent were recycled, according to the Container Recycling Institute. Recycling one ton of plastic would save seven cubic yards of landfill space. A report ( from the Ecology Center in Berkeley, Calif., states that processing recycled plastic costs more than using virgin plastic resins. They recommend reusing plastic bottles yourself, as each bottle may be used about 25 times without any ill effect on the consumer, and using alternatives to plastic bottles such as glass containers and metal water bottles.

#4: Glass Containers 

Over 41 billion glass containers are made each year, and all of them can be reused an infinite number of times. Recycling glass increases its efficiency: recycled glass creates 20 percent less air pollution and 50 percent less water pollution and overall take 50 percent less energy to create. One ton of glass made from recycled materials saves 250 pounds of mining waste.

#3: Magazines, Newspaper, Cardboard, and Mixed Paper

Paper products are among the most common items we produce as a society, and it just so happens they are also among the most recyclable.  Unfortunately, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, paper comprises up to one-third of the waste created in the United States, with cardboard making up a majority of that percentage. Recycled paper saves 60 percent of the energy needed to create new paper, and the process of recycling paper creates 74 percent less air pollution and uses 50 percent less water. One ton of recycled paper saves 17 mature trees, 7,000 gallons of water, three cubic yards of landfill space, two barrels of oil, and 4000 kilowatt hours of electricity. 

#2: Steel cans
Just like glass, steel products can be recycled repeatedly without affecting the quality of the product. Steel cans are perhaps the most numerous of steel recyclables, but steel appliances and auto parts may also be recycled.  More than 80 million tons of steel. Recycling steel saves 74 percent of the energy used to make items, and using recycled scrap steel reduces water pollution, air pollution, and mining waste by about 70 percent Recycling steel saves the equivalent energy to power 18 million households a year.

#1: Aluminum

Aluminum secures the Number One spot on this list because it is 100 percent recyclable and can be used infinitely, just like glass and steel. Whenever a person throws away aluminum, it can waste as much energy as if someone had will the can half full of gasoline and then dumped it out. Recycling aluminum consumes 95 percent less energy than making new aluminum, recycled aluminum saving enough energy to run a 100 watt light bulb for 20 hours, a computer for 3 hours, and a TV for 2 hours. 


To learn more, visit these links:
T0p 10 most important items to recycle

1 comment:

  1. We can recycle things for further use; in this way, we are able to utilize the waste materials and protect our environmental system. But the fact is what kind of products, we are going to recycle. Here, this article describes about the items to recycle, this is definitely improving our knowledge regarding recycling.
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