Recycling Issues

Jan 07 2010

Does recycling really make a difference for the environment? While most people believe so, some don’t.


The Utter Waste of Recycling By Alan Caruba.


Does Recyling Really Help?

Some responses from student readers.

[The latter] is a very interesting article on landfills (but long with small font so remember to exercise your eyes!) Whatever you do, DONT PRINT IT OUT! Paper is the #1 component of landfills, and no, it does not biodegrade! One study found a decade old hotdog in a landfill. Yum. Anyway, most landfills do not provide an environment where biodegrading can occur, however, this is mostly favorable since biodegrading releases toxic gases and materials. We make a lot of trash and yes, this is sad but remember to recycle your paper products and you’ll be doing a big help to decrease landfill space.

Pro-recycling information seems vague and limited. However, those outspoken against recycling, while more specific, seem to have an agenda of their own, mainly, bashing the “left-wing greens” (YIKES! is that us?). Let’s be civilized about it! The main concern seems to be landfill space. While Mt. Trashmore isn’t my idea of a great national monument, what about all the space recycling processing plants take up? Do they smell any better? And do they save any energy?

I’m sure ideally recycling can reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, but I’m not sure recycled materials offset the demand for cutting down tree or producing new materials. I have the feeling we are just consuming too much and companies will keep creating new materials so long as there is a demand. Aha! So maybe if we buy recycled materials we can make a difference.

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