Recycling: The Key to Saving the Environment

Recycling: The Key to Saving the Environment
Recycling: The Key to Saving the Environment

Converting waste into reusable material or recycling has gained prominence in recent years, and for valid reason. There are many ways in which recycling helps sustain the environment and ecological balance. Caring for the environment is good for us; desecrating it will only make life tougher for the generations that come after us. Recycling also creates jobs and new businesses.

Pollution control

The UK produces over 200 million tonnes of waste every year. The average household in the country produces more than a tonne of waste annually.

Waste dumped in landfills starts emitting greenhouse gases as it rots. Methane, one of the greenhouse gases from decomposing waste, is 28 times more potent than carbon dioxide. As you may already be aware, greenhouse gases are a chief cause of climate change, one of the most significant issues of our time.

Record floods, intense wildfires and lethal heat are some adverse effects of climate change. Higher temperatures increase the frequency of various natural disasters, which not only affect man but also kill wildlife and threaten hazardous material spills, further impacting the natural environment and the animal, bird, insect and aquatic life that depend on it for shelter and food.

Recycling reduces the amount of waste ending up at landfills. If every household is diligent about recycling, the country’s air pollution can be controlled in a meaningful way. It is a simple matter of hiring a rubbish clearance and waste management service in south east London to recycle your household’s waste.

Forest conservation

The average UK family disposes of six trees worth of paper in their household bin every year. Recycling paper can contribute towards deforestation efforts: 1 tonne of recycled paper prevents the felling of 12 trees.

Recycling causes 35 per cent less water pollution and 74 per cent less air pollution than producing new paper. The environmental impact of recycling paper should encourage you to gather all the paper waste accumulating in your attic or basement for the past year or more.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) says that the quantity and quality of recycling can be improved by collecting and recycling dry recyclable materials, including paper and card, plastic bottles and metal packaging. The Waste (England and Wales) Regulations 2011 requires waste operators to separately collect waste paper, metal, plastic and glass to be recycled.

If you have a lot of junk mail, packaging waste, used printer paper, and tattered and unsalvageable books and comics, a rubbish removal service in south east London can rid you of paper you no longer need, in a responsible manner.

You can also choose to buy recycled paper. Note that recycled paper is different from recyclable paper. Recycled paper is paper that has been made using recycling methods, while recyclable paper is paper that can be recycled after it is used - which is true for all paper. So, recyclable paper may not contain any recycled content at all and the labelling is just a ploy to confuse consumers.

Energy conservation

Extracting and processing raw resources to produce metal, plastic and other usable materials necessitates a lot of energy. Products being recycled usually require far less processing to convert them into usable materials.

The biggest energy savings are generated for metals produced through energy-intensive mining and processing of ore. Energy savings from beryllium recycling is 80%, lead 75%, iron and steel 72%, while that from beryllium and cadmium are 50%.

  • Aluminium is 100% recyclable and retains its properties indefinitely, which means no new materials are needed in the production cycle. About 20 recycled aluminium cans can be made using the same amount of energy required to make one virgin aluminium can.

  • Manufacturing recycled paper takes up 60% of the energy of producing paper from fresh pulp.

  • Manufacturing recycled paper takes up 60% of the energy of producing paper from fresh pulp.

  • Making glass from recycled materials creates 20 percent less air pollution and 50 percent less water pollution.

Recycling helps conserve energy and raw materials, and does not pollute the environment to the levels contributed in the typical production cycle.

Rubbish and recycling collection services bring jobs to local communities

Recycling manufacturers depend on recyclable materials from rubbish clearance companies and recycling programs. The collection of recyclable materials is the first critical link supporting the chain of economic activity in the recycling industry. Recycling collection creates new jobs in manufacturing industries that use recovered materials from waste to make new products.

The availability of domestic sources of materials also lowers local manufacturers’ dependence on imports and helps strengthen economic security. Households in the UK can do their bit to contribute to the environment with a smart waste management strategy. The best and most convenient way is to hire a rubbish removal Bromley service to get rid of waste responsibly.

Does the UK recycle enough?

Recycling rates in the UK looked promising in the early 2000s, but have remained inconsistent over the years, falling by a whopping 44% recently. The country will likely miss its EU target to recycle or reuse 50% of household waste by 2020.

Many local authorities aren’t recycling household waste at the rate needed to meet this target. There’s also a fair bit of confusion among Brits about what they can and cannot recycle, which has led to recyclable items being thrown away. Unfortunately, many households also admit to knowingly throwing away recyclable items. More awareness around recycling correctly and responsibly may change people’s attitudes. For instance, separate coloured bins for food, metal, plastic, paper and trash can eliminate some confusion.

A concrete step towards addressing confusions around recycling would be simplifying or unifying recycling standards across councils. Currently, different councils recycle different things based on the processing capabilities of nearby facilities and the cost at which the collected material can be sold. Offering everyone the same recycling possibilities is a potential solution, helping people clear rubbish in an informed manner.

Also, recycling and waste incineration for energy are unable to work in tandem. Regions lack the funding to burn waste without sustainably processing emissions released from incineration.

We cannot let the waste burden on earth increase any more. As far as recycling rates go, the UK must try to catch up to the rest of Europe. Households should understand the ecological impact of improper household rubbish removal and recycling, and use a local rubbish clearance service to ensure that waste is disposed of responsibly.