Benefits of Recycling

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INCREASES ENERGY CONSERVATION – by adding recycled materials to the next “mix” of manufacturing plastics, aluminum, paper, etc., less heat is needed in the process (recycled mix is already prepped).Less raw material needs to be excavated or mined from the earth and then transported to manufacturing facilities ( cuts down on the amount of gasoline and oil needed for the transporting/excavating raw materials).

DECREASES GREENHOUSE GASES – less energy is consumed in the manufacturing process because the recycled mix has already been processed. Since less raw materials are used, there are fewer manufacturing emissions and, in the case of paper, less carbon is released into the environment. This all points to a lowering of acid rain.

CONSERVATION OF NATURAL RESOURCES – eg. Recycling 1 ton of newspapers saves 17 trees. Aluminum is 100% recyclable so saves bauxite ore. Using recycled plastic to manufacture more plastics decreases the amount of crude oil and natural gas needed. And using recycled glass to manufacture more glass decreases the amount of silica needed.

RE USE – for the manufacturing of other items: clothing such as fleece jackets , construction materials such as wallboard and ceiling tiles and fiberglass insulation, aggregate for road beds, paper, egg cartons, cardboard boxes, etc.

LANDFILL – by reducing waste, less landfill space is needed both in area and in length of time materials “live” in that space. For eg., recycling 1 plastic bottle saves 100-1000 years of its presence in a landfill, recycling one tin can saves 100 years, recycling one aluminum can saves 500 years, and recycling 1 glass bottle saves as much as 1,000,000.

DEMAND – the demand for recycled products has shown an increase in recycling businesses, which, in turn, has been instrumental in creating jobs. In addition, individuals can make money by returning plastic bottles and “selling” their own scrap metal.

MONETARY SAVINGS – trash/garbage removal from the town costs taxpayers a per ton disposal fee. Currently, Harwinton pays $64/ton to MIRA. Tonnage of recyclables costs nothing. Removing as much recycling as possible from the garbage stream lowers the weight of the garbage and so lowers the amount of money the taxpayers are responsible for. 

Did you know - when an aluminum can is recycled, it can be back in the stores within 60 days?