Tire recycling, battery recycling and more
Waste recycling is the process of turning a product at the end of its useful life into components that can be used to make a new product. Recycling waste material is a key component of the modern waste management industry and provides multiple benefits, including:
- Reducing the consumption of raw materials
- Decreasing air and water pollution
- Lowering energy usage
- Reducing the need for more landfill space.
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Curbside recycling programs are becoming increasingly common in most communities and allow households to easily recycle products such as paper and metal and plastic containers. After being picked up by recycling companies, these items are transported to a recycling center where they are cleaned, sorted and then reprocessed into materials used to manufacture new products. What options are available to recycle household items other than paper, metal and plastic?
Both single-use and rechargeable batteries contain a significant amount of toxic substances, which can leach out and pollute our air and water if the batteries are thrown out with the regular trash. Depending on your community, batteries may be considered hazardous waste, so it is recommended to check with your local government recycling and waste authorities on what to do with used batteries.
Glass bottle and jars are 100 percent recyclable, and glass can be recycled an infinite number of times without any loss of quality. According to the E.P.A., the national recycling rate for glass containers in the U.S. is approximately 25 percent, which translates into almost 13 million items daily. Almost all curbside recycling programs accept glass bottles and jars, but usually not light bulbs, mirrors and drinking glasses, as they contain contaminants other than pure glass.
When changing your car's motor oil, the used motor oil is of critical concern, since each gallon of motor oil that is disposed of improperly can contaminate up to a million gallons of drinking water. Some local government agencies classify used motor oil as a hazardous substance, as it often contains carcinogenic substances. It is recommended to check with your local government recycling and waste authorities on what to do with used motor oil.
Every year in the U.S. approximately 290 million used tires are introduced into the waste and recycling system. If these tires make their way into landfills, they can pollute the air when burned or become a breeding ground for disease-carrying mosquitoes if they fill with water. You can avoid these situations by taking used tires to a local recycling facility or to a tire retailer for proper handling.
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