One Month Recycling Challenge
Americans throw away 28 million bottles and jars that can be recycled each year.
The average person has no clue how much of their waste can actually be recycled. After all, it’s easy to get in the habit of throwing garbage away. But with just a little more consciousness, it is not only easy but very gratifying to let your waste – paper, metal, plastics and glass – live another day. And that day isn’t in a landfill, stream, or along the side of the road!
Think: are you OK with throwing away
- glass that will take 1 million years to decompose?
- plastic beverage bottles that will stick around for more than 400 years?
- aluminum cans that remain in the environment for up to 200 years?
- paper that, being in a landfill, will take decades if not centuries to disappear?
Items used for only seconds will outlive you.
Recycling is an exciting topic because new programs are starting every day, and people can get more involved at any time. So if you have been a passive recycler until now, below is some information about the benefits and ease of recycling. Take a read then give recycling a serious try for one month – we bet you will be surprised how good you feel about lessening your impact on the environment.
Here are some easy links for information in a few regions:
New York City. NYC has a very sophisticated recycling system, which makes sense given the costs of sending shiploads of garbage to landfills in other states. Not only are many items mandated for recycling, but Mayor Bloomberg is going even further, advancing a citywide plan for composting food waste, and banning the use of styrofoam.
Capital Region. Several communities in the area have joined together to put their recycling practices on a single website. Whether you are living in Albany, Schenectady, or many of the neighboring towns and villages, this is a great one stop shop for information.
Buffalo. The city has a great single stream recycling program.
And be sure to check out Recycle Across America for more interesting data.
Over the years, Environmental Advocates has played a key role in increasing the scope of recycling initiatives, including the state’s first bottle recycling bill as well as the expansion of that program a few years ago, and the adoption of electronics recycling.
Today, different communities have different practices – some are more robust than others – but easy recycling is available pretty much anywhere you are.
Do a quick online search for recycling opportunities and programs in your own community. Or if there is not information online, give your local department of sanitation a quick call. They will be happy to hear from you and to know people care about cleaning up your local waste stream.