Editors' Choice

What You Need To Know About Recycling And Why Its Important

Diana Rolland / November 18, 2016

With our global population increasing as well as consumer spending, we are creating more waste. The reality is that our waste is affecting our natural environment and we are seeing these changes in things like climate change. We are producing a ton of air, water, and light pollution and unfortunately, our earth cannot continue this way. Things need to change, and it starts with us as individuals. We must do our best to reduce (our consumption), reuse (products and materials) and recycle as much as possible and wherever possible.

 

By recycling and being more environmentally responsible, we are helping to preserve the earth for future generations. Recycling allows us to conserve raw materials and make new products from old products and recycled materials, which would have been otherwise end up in landfills. It also reduces the need to use our earth’s resources as well as the energy required to produce new products from raw materials, and less air and water pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.

 

 

By recycling we conserve and preserve landfill space and reduce the chemicals and greenhouse gases released by decomposition of biodegradable waste. Greenhouse gases are extremely damaging to the environment, more than carbon dioxide, and has been a contributing factor to climate change. To read more about why it’s important to recycle, click here.

 

Recycling organic materials in the form of composting is an easy and simple method that can be done at home. Organic waste such as fruit and vegetable peels, egg shells, coffee grounds, and other dairy products can be converted to compost rather than being thrown out in the trash and sent to landfills. This can substantially help preserve the limited space in landfills. You can set up your own composting process to be used for your own gardening, or you can put it in your green bin. For more on green bins, composting and organic waste, check out our other article here.

 

Recycling is a simple method that can be done by anyone and can positively impact our world and environment. It’s an important factor especially with the increasing amount of waste our world creates. Generally, you can recycle items via Drop-off centers, Buy-back centers and Curbside Collection. To read more about this click here.

 

Source: revampt

Source: revampt

 

What can you recycle?

 

This may depend on your area, so you should check with your local recycle center to find out if you aren’t sure. You can also look for the recycling symbol on products that tell us if the material can be recycled or if a product is designed for recycling.

 
Aluminum: pop cans, beer cans, , lids, foil, trays, pie plates, roasting pans, automotive parts (you can get paid for bringing large amounts of aluminum to aluminum recycling centers).
 
Paper: newspaper, magazines, phonebooks, junkmail, cardboard boxes, cardboard cans, drink boxes (remove and discard straws), paper packaging, envelopes, printed paper, corrugated cardboard, shipping and packaging boxes, and pizza boxes. Do not recycle paper coated with plastic or aluminum foil, wax, paper with glossy inserts, wet or food stained paper, stickers, carbon paper, laminated paper, or thermal fax paper.
 
Clothes: Try local exchanges, yard sales, or donate to clothing drives or charity organizations.
 
Glass: Beer or wine bottles, jars, glass from old photo frames. Keep glass intact, and avoid recycling broken glass. Clean glass enough to prevent odors. Do not recycle light bulbs, pyrex, ceramics, or mirrors.
 
Plastic: Drink bottles, shampoo or detergent bottles, vitamin bottles, food jars, tubs, lids, jugs, juice cartons, bags (remove receipts, drawstrings, hard plastic handles).There are specific types of plastic types and codes to sort through and it is important to know how to sort them, so you can read more about plastic codes here and here.
 
Styrofoam: Packaging, meat trays, takeout containers, plates, egg cartons, Read more here.
 
Furniture and other wooden products
 
Metallic products: kitchen knives, steel or other metallic screws, metallic parts of vehicles, bicycles, toys, household appliances, metal food packaging, containers, steel beams.
 
Used computers and other electronic devices: computers, cell phones, CDs, DVDs.

 

Do your best to recycle as many items as you can and reduce what you throw away as trash. For more, click here.

 

 

Recycling Tips

 

Avoid the use of plastic bags as much as you can. By decreasing our need for them, it will help decrease the demand and in turn, the production of plastic bags. Instead try to use reusable cloth bags to hold groceries.

 

If you have plastic bags lying around the house, reuse them. They can be used again and again. You can also use them to line your green bin. To read more you can read our article on green bins, composting and disposing of organic waste here.

 

Opt out of paper statements, bills, and newsletters and have them delivered to you via email instead.

 

Helpful resources you should check out

 
Recycle Now

Toronto Recycling