If you want to reduce your carbon footprint in a way that can instantly benefit our planet, you should look into recycling. Thanks to increased awareness, we’re now recycling more than ever. If you’re wondering why and how to recycle, this article is for you.
Why you should recycle
Recycling is so important because of the invaluable lesson it teaches: our seemingly unlimited resources are actually not unlimited. This is especially true when you think about droughts affecting areas like California. When we carelessly go through our most vital resources, we aren’t preparing ourselves for the possibility of a world without them.
With recycling, you can use or consume something to its full potential, then allow it to be generated into a new product. As opposed to trash, which is just destined for a landfill. Recycling is practically like magic as it essentially transforms an old item into a new one. You might have a household full of recycled products. Just make sure you recycle them again when you’re done with them!
Recycling is hugely beneficial to our planet. It’s easy to dispose of things in the trash and shrug your shoulders about what will happen to them. The reality is that garbage tends to go to landfills, which are becoming increasingly tight for space. With United States citizens accumulating an average of 4.6 pounds of trash per person on a daily basis, landfills are closing due to being filled to capacity and harming the groundwater through contamination. These aren’t looming problems that could affect us in the future. They’re existing problems that are affecting us and our planet right now and need to be addressed right away.
Aside from reducing landfill waste, recycling also helps the planet through reducing the demand to create new goods. When something is consumed and disposed of, it means more manpower and machinery to put new ones on the market. With recycling, this demand is diminished, which means much fewer resources are consumed and at a much slower rate. It also reduces greenhouse gas emissions, which harm our ozone layer.
How to get started
If you’ve never recycled a day in your life, this is the perfect time to get started. If your town has a city-wide recycling program, you should have a bin provided with your home. Find out when your recycling is picked up. (it might coincide with trash pickup) Make sure you know what items can be recycled. Some of the most popular items to be recycled include paper goods, glass bottles, and aluminum cans. Things that can’t be recycled include Styrofoam, ceramics, and anything with food waste on it.
Even if your town doesn’t have regular recycling pickup, you can still do your part. Look for recycling centers in your area and bring goods like cans and bottles on a regular basis. If you have space in your garage or basement, you can store these things in a designated container and drop them off on a regular basis, such as twice a month. Just make sure to be consistent about it. Otherwise, you might feel overwhelmed and just end up throwing your would-be recycling in the trash.
You can also recycle on a much more personal level. Without sending anything to a recycling plant, you can repurpose goods. For instance, suppose you finish a beer or soft drink in a glass bottle. You might notice its shape and durable design and be inspired to make a novelty flower vase out of it. Or, you could use newspapers to create a collage or shoebox diorama with your child. Part of the fun of recycling is sparking your creativity.
When helping our planet, it’s important to remember “think global, act local.” With recycling, you can do your part to help your community and, in turn, the planet. By getting started on recycling, you can make this planet a much more hospitable place.
About the Author
Craig is the editor of Green and Growing which wants to educate readers about the importance of sustainable energy and taking care of our planet. He likes to spend his time outdoors hiking or with a good book.