Recycling Facts

Fun and interesting for everyone and great for kids school projects too...

My lists of Recycling facts are the best I could find for you and as time goes by I am sure I will find more and I will add to these as I find them.

Firstly, just a few main recycling facts and tips for you. The best way to help the environment is to:

  • BUY/USE LESS to begin with;
  • buy products with no (or less) packaging, and preferably they will state that the packaging is recycled.
  • But for all the things you do use, the next best thing is to recycle what you can so purchase products with packaging that can be recycled in your area.
  • These days you can even buy recycled products and many of them are absolutely fantastic! There are some extremely innovative and brilliant people working on this out there.

The following are my best recycling facts and tips:


Recycling Facts for Paper

  • I keep all my paper to make papier-mâché and then I make sculptures. You can even make bowls from it and it is FUN! The kids will love making things from the paper you used to throw away. My sculptures are for sale and if you want one please use the contact form to request one :) Each sculpture is hand-made and comes with a Certificate of Authenticity.
  • Over 500,000 trees will be cut down so you can read your Sunday newspaper and if every American recycled just one-tenth of the newspapers you buy, about 25,000,000 trees would be saved every year. Alternatively you can go to a coffee shop on a Sunday morning and read it there or read the news online.
  • If all our newspaper was recycled, we could save about 250,000,000 trees each year!
  • 75% of each tree that is cut down for paper is not used in a paper product and approximately 98 tons of various resources are required to make one ton of paper. So buy recycled paper for all your printing and copying needs as it uses 70% less energy to make.
  • It even costs between 50 to 80% less to build a paper mill that recycles paper than it costs to build a mill that makes new paper.
  • 10 million hectares of ancient forests are destroyed each year the world over which is the equivalent of 1 football field every 2 seconds :( How much of this is now in your trash can?

Recycling Facts for Aluminum

  • An aluminum can be recycled an unlimited amount of times and can be for sale as a new can within 60 days!.
  • The EPA estimates that because so many aluminum cans are recycled, they account for less than 1% of the total U.S. waste stream.
  • All the American-made cars can be built from the steel that is wasted and not recycled...every year.
  • Recycling one aluminum can saves enough energy to light a 100W bulb for 20 hours or run your TV for 3 hours.
  • If you are out on a picnic or driving please take any aluminum cans home with you to put in the recycling bin.

Recycling Facts for Glass

  • Glass is one of those forever things - it can be recycled over and over and over.
  • The energy saved from recycling one glass bottle can run a 100-watt light bulb for four hours or a compact fluorescent bulb for 20 hours. It also causes 20% less air pollution and 50% less water pollution than when a new bottle is made from raw materials.
  • If all the glass bottles and jars collected through recycling in the U.S. in 1994 were laid end to end, they'd reach the moon and half way back to earth.
  • A glass jar in the tip will take longer than 4000 years to decompose.
  • Broken glass, ceramics like ovenproof dishes, drinking glasses or mugs go in your rubbish bin. If you put them in your recycling bin, they will contaminate the recyclable glass bottles. Just 15g of ovenproof glass can contaminate one tonne of normal glass and makes it useless for recycling. In fact, glassware, ceramics, window panes, or mirrors can pose a threat to equipment in a glass recycling plant.
  • For every 2,000 pounds of glass that is recycled, over 2,000 pounds of other resources (1,330 pounds of sand, 433 pounds of soda ash, 433 pounds of limestone, and 151 pounds of feldspar) is saved.

Recycling Facts for Plastic

  • Americans use 4 million plastic bottles every hour, but only 25% of plastic bottles are recycled.
  • The lids to plastic bottles are made of different grades of plastic than the bottle itself and so can't be recycled - just place them in your trash can. You do not need to remove the labels from plastic (or glass) bottles and the little plastic neck ring can stay on the bottle.
  • It takes 700 years for a plastic bottle to begin decomposing.
  • 80% of plastic bottles are not recycled and 90% of the cost of a bottle of water is the bottle! Get a water filter and a reusable water bottle and make your own for a fraction of the cost - it is much healthier too!
  • The bottling and shipping of water is the least energy efficient method of supplying water ever invented.

Recycling Facts for Food

  • Compost will add so much nutrition to your garden that if you do it right you will need little else to make your garden grow.
  • In the average kerbside bin is up to 40% food waste. This is avoidable and can go into the compost, worm farms or to the chickens.
  • When food waste goes into landfill it rots and creates methane. As a greenhouse gas, this methane is 25 times more potent than the carbon pollution that comes out of your car exhaust.
  • Tonnes of food are wasted every year so buy smaller amounts more often so food doesn't go off in the refrigerator. Make smaller meals and if there are leftovers take them to work the next day for lunch.

Recycling Facts for Miscellaneous Materials

  • To recycle light bulbs Home Depot, epa.gov/bulbrecycling and earth911.org can help you identify a local recycling facility."
  • In AUSTRALIA -- FluoroCycle is a voluntary, national scheme that aims to increase recycling of mercury-containing lamps.
    For safe disposal of energy saving light bulbs: Please check with your local authority to determine what conditions apply where you live.
  • Look for Computer Recycling (eWaste) Depots in your area and you can also refill many ink cartridges instead of throwing all of them away after only one use.

I will be adding more recycling facts as I come across them in my research so this page will grow. Happy Recycling!

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