Separating your recyclable materials may sometimes feel like a time-consuming burden. You may even wonder at times if the extra effort is worthwhile and if you are really making any kind of difference when you sort your plastics or peel labels from your bottles. The reality is that recycling really does have a significant impact on the earth. In addition, it also has a positive impact on the economy as well as other aspects of your life that you may not have considered. In fact, here are some interesting facts to back up the importance of recycling.
Many companies in the United States rely upon recycling programs to help them obtain the raw materials they need to make new products. Not only does this help to keep these materials out of landfills, but it also helps these businesses keep their costs down while producing products for consumers. This, in turn, helps the economy by keeping the cost of products down while also providing workers with jobs.
In addition to the jobs that are created by businesses and supported by recycling, the recycling industry itself provides numerous jobs throughout the country. As a $236 billion per year industry, the recycling industry employs 1.1 million workers in more than 56,000 recycling and reuse enterprises.
Reducing Energy Waste
Producing products from recycled goods helps to reduce energy waste. This is because producing a product from scratch requires the use of a greater amount of energy than producing a product from recyclable materials. Manufacturing with recycled aluminum cans, for example, uses 95% less energy than starting over with virgin materials.
Preserving Natural Resources
Natural resources are also saved when manufacturers use recyclable material instead of creating the materials from scratch.
No one wants to live next to a landfill, which means the land used for the landfill as well as the surrounding property is essentially lost to waste. By reducing the amount of waste that makes it to landfills, we can better maintain the natural beauty of an area or the land can be put to better use, such as building housing or recreational facilities.
Preventing Global Warming
According to experts, recycling solid waste in the year 2000 helped to prevent the release of 32.9 million metric tons of carbon equivalent into the air. This, in turn, helps to prevent and slow down the process of global warming.
Reducing Pollution and Protecting Wildlife
Manufacturing good from recycled materials generates less water pollution than manufacturing the same products from virgin materials. Similarly, using recycled materials reduces the need to damage forests, rivers and wetlands in order to obtain virgin materials, thereby protecting the ecosystems that are essential to wildlife.
Shockingly, the average America discards seven and a half pounds of garbage every day. Most of this garbage ends up in landfills where it is compacted and buried. With the help of recycling programs, you can significantly reduce the amount of waste that you contribute to these landfills. In addition, you can feel good about knowing that you are helping to protect the environment while also supporting employment throughout the country.