What Happens to your Recycling?
In 2010 93% of the global population contributed to 275 million metric tons of waste with 4.8-12.7 MT ending up in the ocean (3)
of the 254 million tons of trash Americans throw away is recyclable. (1)
of the 254 million tons of trash Americans throw away is ACTUALLY recycled. (1)
RECYCLING IS A
$106 BILLION INDUSTRY
a system in which all paper fibers, plastics, glass, and other containers are mixed in a collection truck, instead of being sorted by the depositor.
BUT this is threatened by Single-Stream Recycling
BECAUSE OF CONTAMINATION FROM FOOD RESIDUE OR POOR RECYCLING KNOWLEDGE
of recyclables are diverted to landfills (2)
Posing threats to the natural, social, and economic worlds.
Recycling companies lose profit because of less materials going through the system
Employees are at risk of malfunctioning equipment because of plastic bags and other contamination
Systematic tagging is a process in which curbside pickup employees tag resident’s waste with feedback for how to recycle correctly.
A study in Memphis, TN showed that contamination levels dropped by 12% once tagging was implemented
We can eliminate single-stream recycling and make the consumers separate their waste!
BUT 66% of people surveyed by Harris Poll in October 2018 said that they wouldn’t recycle if it was not this easy (4)
Recycling is crucial for healthy ecosystems and economies!
We must do our part as consumers to recycle properly and protect the industry and the environment!
1. P, K. (n.d.). 23 Recycling Statistics That Will Shock You.
2. Flam, F. (2018, June 27). The Recycling Game is Rigged Against You.
3. Jambeck, J. R., Geyer, R., Wilcox, C., Siegler, T. R., Perryman, M., Andrady, A., . . . Law, K. L. (2015). Plastic waste inputs from land into the ocean. Science.
4. Rosengren, C. (2017, February 07). Cities are still struggling to fix recycling contamination - and now, it's getting personal.