Going green isn’t just meant for Earth Day. Going green is a way of life. However, Earth Day is a day we pause and commemorate, acknowledge and support environmental programs and Earth-saving strategies. It is also a great day to commit or recommit to employ earth-friendly practices in your life, at home and in the office. There are countless things you can do to “go green.” Most of these things are ease to incorporate into your life. Recycling is one of the easiest ways to go green. Recycling is the process of obtaining or retaining waste and converting it into usable, new materials. Some things that can be used to recycle are:
Recycling is actually a great way to conserve raw resources and save energy. Recycling at least one ton of paper can save 7,000 gallons of water and 17 trees, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Hiring a skip would help recycle that amount of paper and you can click here for ideas for ideas on the size of the skip you could employ.
As you see, recycling is an effective and simple way to help the environment. It is something the entire family can do too. Before recycling, call your local waste management services. Determine how to you need to sort and pack items for recycling. In addition, you want to know what day or days the waste management services collects recycling. Check with them to find out where you safely dispose of light bulbs, hazardous materials and batteries. These cannot be recycled or put in the trash.
Your local waste management recycling service has different rules about how items must be sorted, cleaned and packaged. Metal, cardboard, plastics, aluminum, glass and paper can be recycled.
It can be tricky to recycle plastics because some can break down easier than other plastics. The number located on the plastic item will determine if it can be recycled. It will also determine if the plastic can be picked up for recycling.
Although plastics are trickier to sort and recycle, it’s important to dispose of them properly. One important factor to establishing a recycling a program at work, school or home is to create a system that works for everyone. Here are a few ways to recycle at home:
Recycling is about convenience, convenience, and more convenience! When incorporating a successful program about which you can read in the essay about recycling, make bins easily accessible. They should be in an area that is easily visible and used like the utility room or kitchen where they can be seen and used
Batteries are not to be recycled. They cannot be put into a trash can for non-recycling either. Instead, they should be properly thrown away at a collection center or a participating auto part store. The same thing should be done with light bulbs.
Make a special area of your home or office to use as a personal sorting center. This is where you can sort and clean recyclables. You may want to look at some personal recycling centers to get an understand of what you need.
Many people do not have an area they can keep bulky recycling or trash in the home or office. If this is the case for you, create a dedicated spot in the garage or other area. It won’t take long before your family or co-workers are pitching in to recycle.
Recycling is full of great ideas to help the environment. Find the ones you like. Used them in your successful recycling program.
Businesses are the largest users of papers and this is taking a heavy toll on the forests and other natural resources. The paper production process consumes a lot of wood and water, besides generating effluents which are harmful for the environment. One of the best ways a business can become environmentally-friendly is to minimize the use of paper in the workplace. Going paperless is one of the essential features of an eco-friendly office. The conversion of paper files into electronic documents is a key step in the journey towards a paperless office. But what is a paperless office and how can it benefit your organization? Read on to know more:
What is a Paperless Office?
A paper-free office uses the lowest amount of paper and relies heavily on digital documents, thus drastically reducing the use of paper in workplace. But going paperless is not a magic wand and requires careful planning, organization and employee participation. The right set of tools and proper employee training is required to realise the dream of a paperless office.
In addition to being eco-friendly, a paper-free office should also provide tangible benefits in order to motivate the office staff. Saving time and efforts through easier filing and document retrieval system is an important step in eliminating paper from the workplace. Another notable step is to replace individual printers with a centralized network printer to track paper usage and restrict the purchase of ink and toners.
The digital filing system is the heart of a paperless office. Digitizing your documentation like using an absence management software, for instance, will not only help in easy document filing but also aid in smooth and fast retrieval. Infact, a cloud-based document management system will enable employees to access important documents off-site, besides safe storage of documents.
Benefits of Going Paperless
Going paperless has numerous benefits for both the business owner and the employees, ranging from saving time and money to boosting security. It is important to analyse the use of paper in the workplace from an individual level upto the organizational level.
Let us analyse the major advantages of a paperless workplace:
1. Saves Time and Space
The filing, organizing and retrieval of paper documents is a time-taking process. Having an electronic filing system will enable file management to be done at the click of a mouse, thus helping business owners to assign employees to more productive and revenue-generating tasks.
Finding ample office space for the filing cabinets is a nightmare for many business owners as the files keeps piling up with each passing year. In particular, the problem is serious for industries having a long document retention time, such as government departments and financial sector.
A digital document management system allows you to store the documents in a cloud-based server with negligible physical footprint.
2. Saves Business Expenses
A paper-free office will reduce the business costs incurred on paper, printers, toners, files, filing cabinets and office space. Studies have shown that a paperless office has a better process efficiency and can handle a larger volume of documentation than traditional offices, thus making a significant savings in employee time with respect to repetitive tasks like expense reimbursements.
3. Protects the Environment
The production of paper and related products leads to the emissions of greenhouse gases, causes deforestation and precipitates climate change. Paper recycling can reduce the environmental impact of paper in the workplace, but only upto to a certain extent. Employees may engage in group activities, like making paper bags from waste papers, to know the importance of waste reduction at work stations.
In the absence of source segregation, most of the paper ends up in landfills or waste-to-energy plant. In addition, toxic chemicals in inks and toners are detrimental to the health of the environment. The most sustainable solution to all these environmental problems is to transform your workplace into a paperless one.
4. Improves Security
A chronic problem in traditional offices is the hardship in tracking paper-based documents on account of misfiling, accidents etc. Moreover, it is difficult to monitor the access, printing and copying of sensitive business documents. A paperless office has a digital document management system with advanced security features to prevent such incidents by restricting access rights at different levels.
How to Tackle Stress in a Paperless Office?
A paperless office may create stress among employees due to increased exposure to technology. Static work postures may also lead to musco-skeletal health issues. An excellent solution to relieve stress is to use art therapy. But, what is art therapy?
Art therapy is a type of therapy that enriches the life of a person through art-making activities , such as drawing, painting, collage or sculpting. It helps in developing self-awareness, boosting self-esteem, trauma-coping and fostering social skills, under the guidance of a qualified therapist.
A paper-free office will not only save time, natural resources and money but also help in smoother and safer flow of information in an organization, thus helping in quick decision-making and responsible business growth.
Environmental degradation has led to many devastating effects such as the depletion of the ozone layer, health problems for people living in areas where toxic fumes and chemicals are released and a change in weather patterns. Everyone can contribute to a better and healthier environment by living eco-friendly lives on a daily basis.
As a student, you can be able to change this and influence others towards getting the environment back to a better place to the extent possible. Here are some tips on how to be an eco-friendly student.
1. Use Little to No Paper
Reduce your use of paper as much as you can. If you want to take notes while in class, use your mobile phone, tablet or laptop to do so. Instead of buying books, download them and read from your device. Not only will you be saving trees from being cut but you will also save a lot of money.
2. Avoid Disposable Eating Utensils
Using disposable cups, plates, and spoons seems like the easiest thing to do to save time. However, this harms the environment in the long run. Choose to use utensils that you can wash and reuse over a long period of time. The money saved from buying these items can be used for eco-friendly projects you would like to participate in.
3. Drive Less and Cycle or Walk More
If your destination is not so far away, you can cycle or walk instead of driving. If the distance is too long, you can choose to travel by public transport. If many people opted to follow this and drive only when it is absolutely necessary, pollution would decrease significantly, contributing to positive effects in the environment.
4. Conserve Water
At all times, be conscious of the amount of water you use whether you are bathing, washing your hands after using the washroom, washing dishes or doing anything else that requires you to use water. To contribute to a green college, use an amount of water that you actually need when showering, brushing your teeth or when suitable.
5. Buy Reusable Bags
Buying plastic bags every time you go shopping is a waste of money and these bags take up so much space in the home. You can opt for reusable bags which you can use more than once when going out for shopping. Apart from saving money, you will save yourself from having to pile a lot of garbage from plastic bags.
6. Save Energy
This is one of the best ways on how to be eco-friendly. One way to save on energy is by reducing the degrees on your thermostat slightly. You can also power down any devices that are not in use such as your electronics. Switching off the lights when you do not need them also helps. Using energy-efficient bulbs is also helpful as they last longer and consume less energy.
7. Participate in Eco-Friendly Projects
Take advantage of every opportunity you get to participate in projects that lead to a better environment. This can be a challenge due to the amount of academic work you may have. You can always receive help with your assignment at any time.
If you are wondering who will do my essay Australia, then worry no more as there are professional writers in online writing services ready to help you anytime you need assistance. With no excuse now, you can participate in cleaning projects, tree planting and any other environmental projects.
8. Buy Reusable Water Bottles
Buying water each time you feel thirsty may not be economically and environmentally beneficial. You can opt to buy 2 or 3 reusable water bottles for carrying water at any time you are outdoor. When buying a water bottle, choose BPA free water bottles as they are more environmental-free.
9. Reduce Meat Consumption
Eating less meat can actually contribute to a better environment and slow down global warming. Harmful gases are usually released to the atmosphere during cattle rearing for meat production. Reducing the consumption of meat will mean less harmful gases being released thus slowing down global warming.
10. Use Environmentally Friendly Cleaning Products
Many cleaning products contain ingredients that are harmful to humans, animals, and the environment. One of the best sustainability tips is to use eco-friendly cleaning products as much as possible. Products such as baking soda, lemons, white vinegar, and hydrogen peroxide are all-natural cleaning products that are not toxic and are easily available.
To get the right ingredients to get rid of any type of stain, you can research on the internet to get suggestions on what you can use.
Whether you know anything about living an eco-friendly life or not, you can always learn and there is always something you can do to make the earth a better place. Keeping up-to-date with the condition of the earth can help you know what you need to work on.
Apart from doing all the above to be an eco-friendly student, you can also join environmental clubs and take part in any events and projects that are geared towards saving our environment. Conducting personal research on how to be more eco-friendly and sharing information with others is also a good way of being an eco-friendly student.
Today´s “eco wave” is a response – a good response – to the climatic crisis the planet is going through. The youth is the one leading this eco-conscious change, and the message is that its time we all get on the same page. Here’s the information on how to conserve energy that every student needs, in order to paint a little green into their dorm rooms.
Ways to save energy in dorm room
One of the most common wastes of energy is through “phantom energy”. So, it’s recommendable to keep your chargers and any dorm room electronics unplugged when you’re not using them. Also, try to switch to LEDs or CFLs light bulbs, which consume less energy and are cheaper. And, during the day, use natural sunlight, keep the light bulbs off until they’re really needed. If you want to keep it green during summer, instead of AC use fans, these consume much less energy.
As well, you should reduce the time you spend with your electronic devices, such as smartphones and laptops. When you need to complete any of your assignments, you can visit the public library to use one of their computers. This is a great way to reduce energy consumption in your dorm room, moreover, you will have quick access to all useful materials. There is also another way to lower the time spent before the computer. You can try to find online and use custom research paper writing service. As a rule, they are cheap, so if you want to be sure of the service’s quality, check the reviews from other clients.
You could also try is to study in shared spaces; a couple of hours studying in the library equals a couple of hours of lights out in your dorm room. Do your research using books instead of reading on your computer. And, if you can’t hire a professional writer service, or need to write the assignment yourself, consider using a typewriter instead of a computer.
Tips to reduce energy consumption on a daily basis
You might feel that actions, like keeping your lights out during the day and hiring professional paper writers to reduce the usage of your devices, aren’t enough. If that’s the case keep reading and learn some measurements that will help you on a daily basis.
Avoid using automobiles. Instead, choose to ride a bike or take a walk to class. If you are too far from school to walk, use public transportation or carpooling.
Avoid printing out papers. A soft copy of your assignment is a great solution.
Purchase a solar charger. You will have to save for a couple of months to buy it, but you will be using renewable energy, so its a great tool and one of the best ways to save energy.
Use rechargeable batteries. These are versatile and will last for years.
Wash clothes with cold water. Heating the water consumes lots of energy and warm water doesn’t really make that much of a difference.
Keep your door closed. If you have a heating or cooling system in your room it’s important to always close the door. To leave the door open with one of those systems working produces a big waste of energy.
Why do it? Some advantages of saving energy
We all know that saving energy is good, but it’s always helpful to know clearly how good it is. So, here are some of the benefits you will obtain from following some ways to save energy.
You will reduce your bills. Electricity is one of the most expensive services in the majority of countries around the world. So, keeping your consumption down will also help you keep your bills low. We all know: any measure that can give our pockets some relief is good for us.
You will reduce your climate print. To produce electricity, its necessary to use fossil fuels, which have an enormous environmental footprint. The less energy we use, the less pollution we are responsible for. Reducing your energy consumption seems like a small step, but it makes a huge difference your our planet.
Less pollution also translates into fewer health risks. Air contamination is not only bad for plants and other species of animals, it´s also harmful to humans. So, a cleaner air, without high concentrations of CO2 and other dangerous gases, represents better health for you.
Paper has many different uses. Receipts, paper bags, cartons, and books all use paper. That being said, the utility of paper is quite clear especially given the fact that the world is going greener by the day. However, while there has been a lot of progress in attaining a green standard in the paper and pulp industry, there’ve also been quite a few challenges.
Also, as our contemporary society has evolved over the years, the demand for paper has increased exponentially. Probably because we use a lot of it. It comes as no surprise then that the world is creating sustainable processes and innovations to increase yields to sustain the ever-increasing demand for paper globally. You’d be right in saying that the rate of innovation, as far as making paper is concerned, is quite rapid.
Unfortunately, paper and pulp production account for some of the pollutions in our society. Also, plenty of water is wasted during the process. As much as 100 liters of water can go into making a kilogram of paper. Moreover, due to poor industry practices, the polluted water that comes out as a byproduct of this process is dumped in places where it shouldn’t be e.g., the ocean. Also, on that note, a lot of energy is wasted in the process. Almost every stage of the paper-making process uses a lot of energy.
Also, in the world’s bid to make the future renewable, wood will be a very important part of this transition. Therefore, sustainable forestry should be instituted as a matter of urgency otherwise it will be hard to meet our targets. Mind you if resources are used improperly, unwanted consequences may arise.
That being said, the following is a brief guide on sustainable paper and pulp production. It details some of the things you need to know about the industry seeing that it’s an industry that’s seen many advancements over the years. It also gives some vital outlooks as far as sustainable forestry is concerned.
1. Sustainable Manufacturing and Harvesting
Wood is the primary raw material in the paper-making process. Paper is made from pulp and pulp is made from fibers (cellulose) found in wood. As such, plenty of wood is required to produce more and to meet demand. Thus, the necessity of sustainable forestry. More forest is needed to harvest and produce more. The move towards sustainable paper and pulp production has to be facilitated by adopting innovative technology. Here’s why:
Since production starts in the forest, you need the machinery to harvest the wood. Sawing equipment like deck saws and saw chains are used to cut and log trees for further processing. To minimize wastage and save time, you need the help of advanced technologies. Reputable brands like Pacific Trail Manufacturing have a wide array of equipment to choose from. They have the most cutting-edge technologies in terms of sawing trees.
Moreover, if sustainability is to be attained in the paper and pulp production industry, it should start somewhere at the source (forest) e.g., if you salvage time savings, money savings, and reduce waste (water and electricity) by using advanced technology when harvesting wood, these costs, and environmental advantages will trickle down the value chain.
Machine technology is more effective and efficient compared to the human hand. Humans are not as fast as computers, robots, and machines. Since machines are more productive, they make fewer mistakes than humans. Mind you, making mistakes may not be good for a business’s bottom line. That’s why the paper and pulp production process is mostly automated. Human involvement is needed before upkeep and maintenance. From source to processing to the end product, every part of the production has some form of automation in it. A sustainable future cannot be secured apart from innovation, information and technology, and machinery.
2. Forest Biodiversity
This establishment of sustainable forests is good for the industry. It allows for the spread and diversification of plant species. Also, if done right, it contributes towards environmental equilibrium. While it is true that some people still engage in irresponsible logging activities, there’s still a concerted effort toward making the paper-making process environmentally sustainable. You certainly don’t want to produce paper at the expense of natural habitats. Also, you do not want to destroy habitats all for the sake of meeting a demand for paper. It makes a lot of economic sense, but it’s morally skewed.
Moreover, when forests are grown specifically for raising trees that will be used in the paper in paper production, we preserve the integrity of the nature reserves surrounding those areas. That’s why it’s important to have regulations in place that govern how sustainable forestry should be done. You need to work with nature lest it works against you.
Furthermore, the whole point of sustainability is to improve productivity without worsening the condition of nature. Otherwise, we will pay a heavy price for disrupting the equilibrium that’s already there. Thankfully we have experts in the field of biodiversity research. Tons of research help people to understand the dynamics of nature, what to look out for, and how we can improve production without damaging our environment.
The objective of certification procedures in forestry is to legitimize the paper and pulp production process. It’s no secret that healthy forests are essential in building a sustainable production process. The paper production industry accounts for a lot of waste as mentioned before. So, if sustainable production is to be attained, regulation is required.
In North America, there are three notable programs in place to help validate processes of harvest and production namely the American Tree Farming System (ATTS), Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), and the Sustainable Forest Initiative (SFI). They are all different regarding the key focus areas they intend to address. But the end goal is more or less the same, to instill credibility accountability in forestry.
These programs can elaborate on the practices which are supposed to be followed by all landowners as far as growing trees and sustainably harvesting them is concerned. Those landowners who can prove their certification automatically improve their credibility. They will also have greater access to other markets. The more landowners that partner with such endeavors, the more sustainable the value chain will be. Remember, if any sustainable future is to be secured, it has to start from the source.
An additional benefit of managing forests is that the paper and pulp industry accounts for a lot of jobs globally. Establishing regulations that protect forests can contribute to protecting the jobs of the many people who are employed in the industry. Throughout the value chain, you will find that there are a lot of people who are employed from the tree cutting to the final product (paper).
4. Renewable Energy
Paper is perhaps one of the most renewable substances on this planet. Paper recycling is quite popular nowadays and it accounts for much of the paper that we use. The fact that paper is recyclable means that it’s a better substitute for non-renewable substances like plastic. The more that our world gravitates towards a pro-paper society, the more inventive people have to be to extract more volumes of paper from waste and landfills.
Demand is and will most likely stay high. Recycling is going to be a part of the renewable future that the world is aiming towards. A lot of energy is lost in processing and extracting paper. Therefore, innovation will be a constant feature insofar as attaining sustainable paper and pulp induction is concerned.
Also, relying too much on energy can be deleterious because it means that if a power cut occurs, the whole process will be affected. Using renewable energy sources to facilitate production can help. Renewable sources of energy like biomass and solar energy are alternatives to electrical energy.
Although the energy from renewables is hard to harness, it’s possible to create hybrid systems that utilize both renewable and non-renewable energy. If the production process is transformed into a renewable machine as much as possible, less energy is wasted and fewer emissions are produced. A renewable energy cycle can be created wherein most parts of the system are powered by green energy.
5. The Problem of Deforestation
Deforestation is a big problem. Agriculture, mining, and construction projects are the main causes of deforestation. It’s a practice that marks the epitome of unsustainable forestry. Harvesting trees without replacing them will lead to all kinds of problems in the long run.
If people make the habit of cutting forests illegally and not replacing them, it could lead to desertification and habitat loss. This also ties in with biodiversity loss which is devastating to maintaining the equilibrium of the environment. Destruction of food chains can have far-reaching effects on the entire ecosystem. That’s why deforestation must be shunned. Also, that’s why forests are being regulated more diligently.
Moreover, deforestation is a barrier to sustainable paper and pulp production. If deforestation is allowed to continue, the hope for building a sustainable paper and pulp production system is futile. It’s like moving forward-backward. That’s why most authorities around the world put punishments in place for people who cut trees without permits or some form of authorization legitimizing their activity. Trees are an important natural resource and they must be protected. If trees are harvested improperly, the effects will be felt across the whole production chain and in the environment.
Sustainability is much sought after in today’s contemporary society. Thus, the drive for efficiency and innovation in production. The pulp and paper industry is no different. There is no determining what the ceiling is when it comes to technological innovation. All that can be ascertained is that any form of progress is welcome. Because if the future is to be green, every opportunity for growth needs to be utilized. All things considered, sustainability is and will always be a worthwhile goal.
Whether talking about recycling for a home or business, this type of service is extremely important for the environment. Waste has a negative impact on the environment and can cause pollution of many kinds. Most companies that offer both garbage and recycling services are very organized, and consumers are expected to be equally organized in sorting their waste and separating it from recyclable items.
Because the process of figuring out what can be recycled, many individuals and business owners find it is much easier to simply hire a waste management company.
Below are some questions to consider when looking for recycling services and reasons why hiring a waste management company can take the guesswork out of recycling.
What Kind of Recycling Service is Required?
This can mean anything from home to office to hazardous waste to syringe collection services. Some companies offer all types of recycling and provide the different skip bins necessary to mitigate these needs. It is important to contact the company and find out as much information that is needed to make an informed decision on how recycling is handled.
However, most companies will only offer a general list of items that can be recycled, including plastics, cardboards, glass, etc. This list will not be exhaustive, leaving many consumers to wonder what to do with items such as plastic bottle caps, milk cartons and the like. A waste management company will know the specific regulations for what can and cannot be recycled, eliminating the hassle for you.
What Can Be Recycled?
Bricks, wood, paper, metals, cardboard, plastics, concrete, and green waste can all be recycled.
Bricks – These are broken down and crushed in order to be made into new bricks.
Wood – Wood can be used again as a building material or can be processed into pulp or mulch. Recycling wood can limit the number of trees that are being cut down.
Paper – The process for this material mixes old paper with chemicals and water to break it down. It is then chopped, heated and broken down further into strands of cellulose. This substance is then called slurry or pulp and is further recycled into new paper.
Metals – Recycling metals will not alter its properties, the most common metals recycled are steel and aluminum.
Cardboard – This uses a process that reuses thick sheets of multilayered papers (cardboard) that have been discarded.
Plastics – The recycling process for plastics recovers waste or scraps of plastic and reprocesses them into useful products.
Concrete – This type of recycling is becoming more common and uses a process of reuse of the rubble for new construction endeavors.
Green Waste – This can be anything from leaves to grass trimmings to flower cuttings that can be decomposed and then recycled. This will in turn produce what is called green waste.
There are a number of items that can be recycled, but it is important to note that not all recycling pickup services will be able to process all the items mentioned above. Certain materials, such as concrete or wood, must be disposed of at specific facilities.
Recycling has unending benefits
For the average homeowner, this can mean having to locate the specific facility and transport the recyclable materials to them. A waste management company will have the contacts in the industry to know where to take any type of recyclable item and can take care of the transportation for you.
What Recycling Techniques Are Used, and Are They Legal and Ethical?
Concretes and Aggregates – This process would involve using a crushing machine and combining the concrete with bricks, asphalt, dirt and rocks. The smaller pieces will be used as gravel, crushed concrete can all be used as dry aggregate, which in turn can be used to make new concrete that will be free of contaminates.
Batteries – This type of recycling can be very difficult; all batteries must be sorted into groups of similar kinds and require. Older batteries contain cadmium and mercury, which are very harmful and must be handled very carefully.
Biodegradable Waste – This type of waste can be made into reusable material via the process of biological decomposition. The two mechanisms that help this to occur are composting or converting it into soil improver and biogas. The latter uses anaerobic digestion where organic wastes are broken down by microorganisms in a biogas plant.
Again, a waste management company will be able to guarantee that your recycling ends up in the right processing facilities and to ensure that it does get processed according to government regulations and ethical means. When the wrong items end up in recycling, this can lead to an entire batch being thrown out. A waste management company will make sure that the recyclable items are properly sorted, helping to ensure that your efforts to recycle do not go to waste.
What Are the Benefits of Recycling?
There are many benefits to using a recycling service. For instance, recycling conserves energy, reduces greenhouse gases, reduces water and air pollution, and conserves natural resources by reusing recycled materials. Protecting the environment is one of the most important things a home or business can do. When an individual or business chooses to recycle all different kinds of waste, it makes the world a better, less toxic place to live.
Not only does recycling help protect the world, it also reduces the need for extraction such as mining, logging and quarrying. It also reduces the need for processing and refining of raw materials. All these processes can contain harmful, substantial amounts of water and air pollution. Recycling will save this energy while reducing the amount of greenhouse gas, which in turn helps to attack climate change.
Recycling is an effective energy conservation measure that translates into avoided emissions alongside other environmental and economic benefits. It saves energy by decreasing or eliminating energy use during extraction, transportation, and processing of raw materials into finished products.
How Recycling Saves Energy
Manufacturing is a labor, waste, and energy-intensive process that is never-ending due to the increasing demand for consumer products. Manufacturing products from scratch requires raw materials to be extracted, transported, and refined. However, when recycling, you are using already refined materials that need less energy to be transformed into usable products.
Recycling also saves time, money, natural resources, conserves the environment, and shrinks landfills. Hence, the more we recycle, the more we save and gain. Because of these benefits, it is essential to sign up for a residential recycling collection service to have your recyclable trash going to the right place.
The amount of energy saved through recycling generally depends on the material being reprocessed. Let’s take a look at the energy savings of four of the most commonly recycled materials.
Aluminum manufacturing requires huge amounts of heat and electricity. Despite constant efforts to reduce energy consumption, manufacturing aluminum still costs three times more than the theoretical minimum energy requirement.
Recycling aluminum cans and scrapes requires 6 percent of the energy needed to manufacture aluminum from bauxite ore. Repurposing aluminum saves the energy that would have been used to extract, transport, crush, and combine bauxite with caustic soda. Additionally, extracting aluminum from bauxite requires the ore to be purified and smelted.
Thus, the aluminum recycling process is fast, efficient, and achieves up to 94 percent energy savings. Even better, you can recycle aluminum infinite times without degrading, increasing energy saving in the long run. Besides, introducing new alloys and improved product design along the product chain results in more energy and environmental savings.
Glassmaking is an energy-intensive process that involves melting sand and other minerals at extremely high temperatures. Reprocessing glass still needs lots of energy to melt the glass and make a new product. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says reprocessing glass results in 30% energy savings. Glass, like aluminum, does not degrade when it is recycled.
Thus, tossing glass in recycling bins will help preserve natural resources, like sand and soda ash, and reduce the energy costs involved with transporting these heavy materials. It also allows glass manufacturers to cut on energy input to their furnaces. The cumulative energy costs decrease by 2 to 3 percent for every 10 percent of broken glass used in the production process.
Moreover, the durability of glass allows for recycling without reprocessing. This means that you can save 100% energy by cleaning and reusing glass around your home and eliminate the need for an energy-intensive manufacturing process.
An average American household throws away 13,000 pieces of paper every year. These translate into almost 1 billion trees worth of paper being thrown away yearly in the U.S. You can recycle all or most of this paper and contribute to 40% energy savings. Recycled paper can be used to make a variety of new paper products.
However, this is limited by its appearance, which is not as white or smooth as new paper. Fortunately, biodegradable inks and erasable paper promise improved paper recycling efficiency. You could also reduce your paper usage or reuse paper around your home whenever possible to conserve energy and save trees.
Many plastic products are single-use commodities that are only in use for a few minutes. However, these require hundreds of years to biodegrade. Sadly, approximately 4 percent of America’s total energy consumption goes to producing plastic products.
Recycling plastic requires only about 10% of the energy needed to manufacture one pound of plastic from virgin sources. The recovery process has short-term energy-saving benefits because plastics degrade every time they are recycled.
However, many manufactures have ways of repurposing low-grade plastics to use in less demanding applications, such as carpeting, park benches, auto parts, and insulation.
Other Materials to Recycle Around Your Home
You can recycle many other materials around your home, and you can determine their energy savings using the iWARM tool created by the EPA. Some of these materials include
You can also contribute to energy conservation by purchasing recycled household products. Some of the most common include
Reduce, reuse, recycle is a lifestyle that leads us to a greener planet. Following these guidelines for a greener planet will also save you some coins because most recycled products cost significantly less than products produced using virgin material. Keep in mind that 75 percent of all waste can be recycled, and doing this will save the planet loads of energy.
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