11 Things You Didn’t Know About Recycling (But Should!)
Recycling is important to reduce the need for virgin materials. It can also be complicated and confusing. Find out things you didn’t know about recycling to make the process easier, and to help the planet.
Crush Plastic Bottles
Or put those plastic bottles to use cooling down your bunny rabbit.
Recycling Saves Energy
Discover a clever way to hang recycling bins at home.
Don’t be a Wishful Recycler
Find out how to get rid of anything the right way.
Plastic Bags are Recyclable Just Don’t Put Them in the Bin
Eliminate plastic bags from your life by switching to other options.
Bring Plastic Bags to the Grocery Store
Recycling Movement Wasn’t Created to Reduce Waste Necessarily
In Aluminum Upcycled: Sustainable Design in Historical Perspective Carl A Zimring writes that Oregon required the beverage industry to impose a deposit on its products. The beverage industry responded by trying to stop deposit laws and supporting public policies that did not require producer responsibility. In the 1970s the aluminum scrap dealers lobbied for increased reclamation rates. Pepsi offered recycling receptacles to the Chicago Park District if it could advertise on them and recoup the cans.
Clamshell Packaging is not Recyclable
Instead use those containers as a seed broadcaster.
Plastic Forks, Spoons and Knives are Not Recyclable
Keep the Caps on
The reason for some removing plastic caps stemmed from the fact that the plastic bottle is typically made of polyethylene terephthalate, also known as PET and plastic No. 1, or polyethylene, also known as HDPE and plastic No. 2. The cap is typically made of polypropylene, also known as PP and plastic No. 5.
It turns out plastics have to be separated based on melting points.
The Association of Plastic Recyclers recommends crushing empty bottles and placing the cap back on the bottle, though rinsing them isn’t necessary.
Put old 2-liter plastic bottles to use as plastic bag storage in your kitchen.
Glass is Goofy
Some places like Santa Fe have stopped picking up glass at the curb because it’s still cheaper just to make new glass from sand. But recycling glass is still more energy efficient. According to a Marketplace article, it takes 30 percent less energy and creates 50 percent less pollution to use recycled glass to make new glass than does making new glass from scratch. Also, using recycled glass for new glass products requires less energy because the recycled glass melts at a lower temperature.