Friday, March 27, 2009

Recycling - It Makes Sense

Recycling has many different advantages. Reusing the earths natural resources over and over again after it has already been extracted from the earth makes good sense doesn't it? Did you know that 80% of our trash is recyclable but only 28% is actually recycled?

Recycling helps preserve the few undamaged ecosystems we have. We need to protect these resources for future generations. Also by recycling we are keeping waste out of our landfills. These landfills pose environmental and health concerns. It costs millions of dollars to maintain these landfills.

Many communities offer a city wide curb side recycling service provided to everyone. Some cities may offer this through individual trash haulers. In these cities the service needs to be arranged by each individual residents.

Since different communities use different services, recycables that get picked up may differ. It is best to check with your local company to see what is acceptable.

Fun Facts
*Recycling creates 6 times as many jobs as landfilling
*Recycling 1 ton of paper saves 17 trees, 2 barrels of oil (enough to run the average car for 1,260 miles), 4,100 kilowatts of energy (enough power for the average home for 6 months), 3.2 cubic yards of landfill space, and 60 pounds of air pollution.
*Americans throw away enough aluminum to rebuild our entire commercial fleet of airplanes every 3 months.
*Recycling glass instead of making it from silica sand reduces mining waste by 70%, water use by 50%, and air pollution by 20%.
*Recycling just one aluminum can saves enough energy to operate a TV for 3 hours.
*If we recycled all of the newspapers printed in the U.S. on a typical Sunday, we would save 550,000 trees--or about 26 million trees per year.

In my community curb side recycling is picked up each week (we are switching to every 2 weeks soon). We are provided with a container to place all our recyclables in and we are in charge of putting in on the curb. We are billed a yearly fee, around $38.00.

This is what works for my family. In my home next to my trash can is my "Recycle" trash can. All paper, plastic and aluminum goes in here. Each night my son has to dump this in the large bin outside (this is part of his chores).

Recycling has reduced our trash tremendously. Plus, it makes me feel good to know that I am helping the environment.


  1. Thanks for the great blog. I love the earth friendly AND frugal ideas. I am in Eastern Iowa, so I appreciate the Midwest-specific tips! BTW free Jolly Time reusable grocery bag with 3 UPCs right now. (look on the newer boxes):) Stephanie

  2. Thanks for this post. It's really interesting to know what the facts are. We are trying to get them to pick up recycling in my area, but haven't had any luck. For me I have to pay to recycle and drive it to the place 25 miles out of the way. I wish I could do more.

  3. Thanks for the info Stephanie!