Why should we recycle? Well, recycling is an integral part of resource management, because the honest trust is that the world's resources will not last forever. For a sustainable future, recycling is key.
Recycling allows us to convert what would have been waste products into brand new products with an entirely new lifespan. We can recycle a wide range of products, including day-to-day waste such as cardboard and plastic, as well as larger items like televisions or vehicles.
Recycling is a process that needs to be taking place at all levels of society, but it starts at home. Yes, by staying green and recycling waste and unwanted products, you can help to build a better, cleaner planet for future generations!
Keep reading to discover how recycling allows us to save resources, help the environment, and build for a sustainable future. Here are the 7 most important reasons to recycle!
1) Recycling Saves the Planet's Resources
Recycling allows us to reuse materials that have already been dug out of the ground, harvested, chopped down, or synthetically produced.
- Rather than mining fresh resources or felling swathes of rainforest, recycling allows us to save these natural resources by making use of materials that are already in circulation.
- A few examples of recycled materials include glass, steel, plastic, aluminium, and paper.
- Recycling also allows us to save valuable space that would otherwise be turned into a landfill.
- As the world's population increases ever more dramatically, these resources are becoming scarcer and scarcer, so it becomes much more important to recycle.
2) Recycling Reduces Greenhouse Gas Emissions
- Greenhouse gas emissions directly contribute to an ever changing and warming climate.
- Unfortunately, production and manufacturing industries contribute a large portion of these gases, and the demand for new products only increases the level of emissions.
- Many waste products are also burned rather than being recycled.
- Recycling allows us to lower emissions by reusing products that could end up burned, or by cutting back the demand for new products to be produced and sold.
3) Recycling Reduces Pollution
How does recycling help reduce pollution?
- Aside from cutting down on greenhouse gas emissions, recycling reduces levels of toxic air pollution, improving the quality of the air that we breathe in daily (this is particularly important in densely populated cities).
- Recycling also stops ground pollution, as there's no need for landfills, while the oceans and waterways are saved from plastic pollution, as there are no plastic bottles being thrown in the trash.
4) Recycling Saves Energy
Recycling also saves massive amounts of energy.
- Rather than using existing energy sources to extract natural resources, there's simply no need to extract natural resources.
- It takes a lot of energy to create new products, but there’s less energy needed to recycle old products and waste into new products.
- The cycle can be repeated, resulting in the need for less energy to be harnessed for an increased level of productivity.
5) Recycling Saves Wildlife
- It's not just natural resources we are concerned about, though – we also see the rich wildlife resources that are diminishing every year.
- The demand for new resources causes the unnecessary destruction of animal habitats, be it in the rainforest, in our oceans, or in the countryside.
- Our once diverse ecosystems are being rapidly eroded, but recycling can help us to slow this process down, and ultimately, stop it altogether.
6) Recycling Creates More Jobs
The human element is always important too.
- While many proponents of fossil fuels and industry claim to be creating jobs, the same can also be said of the recycling industry.
- In fact, more recycling increases the number of jobs going in the supply chain and can cancel out a loss of jobs in heavy industry or resource exploitation.
- In the recycling chain, employees are needed to collect recycling, sort recycling, oversee transport, manage our recycling plants, and much more!
7) Recycling Saves Everyone Money
Ultimately, even if the environmental arguments don't sway you, there's no denying the fact that recycling saves everyone money in the long term!
- Cutting down the need to extract resources, refine resources, and manufacture from scratch eliminates huge costs for companies.
- Recycling products allows us to focus our money (and resources) elsewhere, to improve our standard of living and create a better society – and these are things we all want.
One Person Can Make a Difference!
Why recycle if no one else bothers to? That's a valid question, but the straight-up answer is that even one person can make a difference.
- Recycling started out small, but it took millions of individuals, individually adopting new practices, for it to become a success.
- There's still a long, long way for us to go from here, but individuals still make a huge difference.
- You can help by sorting your recycling into the correct boxes, cutting down on plastic waste, and making small changes to your lifestyle, like using an ice ball maker instead of buying plastic bags full of ice.
- Boycott companies that refuse to recycle, and encourage your friends and families to become more recycling-friendly!
Sustainability needs to be the future, or else, there might not be much of a world left to live in.
What Happens if We Don't Recycle?
Why is recycling important? To really understand how recycling helps the world around us, we need to also understand what happens if wedon't recycle!
In fact, the effects of not recycling for generations have already been felt. There are huge landfill sites, polluted cities, and draining resources. If you're still wondering - how does recycling help? - then look at smoggy skies and plastic-filled oceans for the answer.
The effects of not recycling have an environmental and economic impact. They lead to land waste as landfill sites become full, and they cause the release of greenhouse gas emissions as new products are made.
The Final Say: Why Should We Recycle?
Ultimately, the question shouldn't be: Why should we recycle? Instead, what we should be asking is: Why don't people recycle?
In the US, recycling is becoming easier and more convenient every year. Local authorities are striving to make recycling accessible and efficient, and it's easier than ever for you to place cans in the recycling rather than the trash.
But why should people recycle? As we've shown, recycling cuts down on resource waste, directly helps the environment, preserves wildlife, creates jobs, saves money, and more. Why not bookmark our guide to recycling, so you can live a more sustainable life?