The Recycling Industry: Playing Our Part on Earth Day 2017 and Beyond

© 2017-The Weston Democrat

The recycling industry is proud to join individuals and organizations across the globe in a worldwide effort to save and nurture the environment of which recycling plays a crucial role. Established in 1970 as a national day of environmental focus, Earth Day now spans the globe and provides individuals with a reminder of the vital role we all must play in order to protect the planet we inhabit.

Each year the scrap recycling industry recycles roughly 130 million metric tons of materials, thereby transforming society’s outdated and obsolete products and materials into useful raw materials needed to produce new products. In doing so, the scrap recycling industry has made great savings in both energy and natural resources and thus has had an extremely positive impact on our environment. Further, by purchasing products at the end of their life and processing them back into raw materials used in the manufacturing of new products, scrap recycling reduces the need for virgin materials, such as iron ore, trees, and other natural resources. Recycling reduces energy consumption and the emission of greenhouse gases that contribute to global climate change, while helping to maintain a steady supply of raw materials for the U.S. and global economies.

Earth Day recycling facts:

The total estimated reduction in C02 emissions from scrap recycling globally is approximately 410 million tons per year.
Recycling one car saves the energy equivalent of 450 gallons of gasoline and reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 8,811 lbs.
There is up to 87% reduction in energy consumption when producing recycled plastic compared to from virgin materials.
Recycling one ton of paper saves 3.3 cubic yards of landfill.
Recycling one plastic bottle conserves enough energy to light a 60 watt bulb for up to six hours
As the original green industry, recyclers understand the vital role the industry plays in the protection, preservation, and future of the planet, as well as conservation of its many resources. By protecting the earth’s air, water, and land, recycling gives us a means to have a less detrimental impact on our planet and directly contribute to our quality of life. ISRI, together with our members, serves as an environmental steward, promoting recycling at all levels, educating future generations on the importance of recycling, and encouraging manufacturers to design products with recycling and earth conservation in mind.

This Earth Day, it is crucial that we all play our part. Small changes today can mean big differences tomorrow.

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