Our world is finite. The resources we have across our planet are likewise limited. Many of these materials can help people around the world to live a safer, healthier, happier life when taken, processed, and made into new products and tools. To create these new products, however, something must be used up. Whether it’s aluminum in a tractor trailer, plastic in a traffic cone, or paper in a notebook, all such products come from a limited supply of natural resources.
Almost everything that winds up in a landfill was made from natural resources. When goods become garbage, we lose those materials - costing our economy and our planet!
Recycling succeeds in its ability to make old materials new again, instead of requiring the extraction of new materials for each and every product. By reusing materials, we save time, manpower, energy, and money. By reducing the need for new materials, we severely reduce the negative impacts such extraction has on our environment by lowering the demand for lumber sites, mining projects, and toxin-emitting factories and workshops. Through recycling, we can even limit the waste entering landfills, freeing up space near cities and towns that might otherwise be filled up with trash!
Let's get back to the basics! If you're not recycling items like these, ask yourself "Why not?!"
Recycling is about more than protecting some distant wilderness or nature. It’s about protecting our immediate environment, the space in which we live and breathe, work and play, every single day. It’s about protecting your physical health, your mental health, your financial well-being, and so much more. Yes, it can improve your own life.Yes, it can improve your children’s lives for years to come.
Every year, the United States generates more than 250 million tons of garbage. That's 500 trillion pounds!This trash does not 'go away'. Instead, it either needs to be reused in some way, recycled, put in a landfill or, worst of all, gets tossed in our streets, parks, forests, rivers, lakes and oceans. Here are just a few more statistics on waste in the United States:
In 2014, 34.6% of waste generated in the United States was recycled.Salt Lake County, however, is well below this average. In 2017, Salt Lake County is only diverted 22% of waste from the landfill.
SLCo Recycling is determined to raise this number, but we need your help. Recycling only succeeds when you decide to recycle.
We cannot force your hand. We cannot dig through your trash and pull out all the recyclables. What we can do is teach, and hope that what learn, you will put into practice.
Want to set up a tour or presentation for your classroom or workplace? Check out our Education page.
How about some more information on better reducing, reusing, recycling and composting practices? Visit our Resources here.
Most importantly, you can sign up for our Recycling Challenge and start making an impact today!