What is recycling? What is the main problems when we don’t recycle for now and future? how to encourage people to sort their waste?

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enotechris's profile pic

enotechris | College Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

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When a particular material is abundant and readily at hand, there's little or no incentive to recycle; in fact, it may be cheaper to keep extracting a given material from its natural source and dump it after its used or worn out.  There are intangible costs, however.  For example, the materials needed to make tires where at one time relatively cheap, and after the tire was worn, it was dumped in a landfill.  Over time, those accumulating tires not only created an eyesore, but would cause damage to the immediate area as they broke down -- particularly if the pile caught fire, and generated noxious smoke and hazardous residue.  So even if it had been cheaper to dispose of them in a landfill, there were several intangible benefits in spending the extra money to break down an reuse the tire's components through recycling.

These days, tires are routinely "deconstructed" to extract their starting materials which can be used to create new tires.  This is not done so much out of a sense of environmental responsibility and less so out of a sense of aesthetics, but because it's cheaper to recycle than extract starting materials from their original natural sources.

Aluminum is another example.  Recycling aluminum cans saves about 90% of the energy of mining the bauxite needed to create new aluminum, and as we all know, energy is expensive these days.

Most of our modern materials are derived from some sort of plastic, which is in turn, derived from petroleum.  Anything that can be done to minimize the cost of production, including the wholesale recycling of old material, will be done under the incentive of keeping costs down.


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readerofbooks | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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This is an honest and important question. Recycling is the process whereby people reuse what has been once used. There are many reasons why this is an important endeavor. First, if a person is able to reuse material, then there will be the ability to save on natural resources. This is an important point, because we think that there will be an endless supply of materials, but there is a limit to all things. Second, if we do not reuse, then we will need to throw things away. However, we are running out of places to throw things away, especially if these things are toxic. Third reusing something can be a great way to save the environment.

So, how can we encourage people to recycle? Education, basic steps on how to recycle, and finally offer an example.

pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Recycling is, of course, the practice of taking things that you would otherwise throw away and reusing them.  This is usually done by breaking them down into what they were originally made of (a can is melted back into aluminum, for example) and then reusing the materials (make another can out of the aluminum).

There are two major problems that would encourage us to recycle:

  • We are running out of places for storing the garbage that we throw away.  And in some cases, throwing things away can allow toxic substances to leak out of them into the soil.
  • We may run out of the resources needed for making new things if we do not recycle.
versatilekamini's profile pic

versatilekamini | College Teacher | (Level 1) Valedictorian

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Recycling is a process in which used materials are converted into new products.Recycling reduces the consumption of fresh raw materials,reduce air pollution,water pollution and energy usage.

Recycling lowers the greenhouse gas emissions. It includes various kinds of materials like glass,paper,metal,textiles and electronics.In another terms we can say that recycling of a material would produce a fresh supply of the same material.

There are many problems when we don’t recycle for now and future.These are as follows:

1.No gain of energy

2.Increase in waste products

3.Increase in pollution

giorgiana1976's profile pic

giorgiana1976 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

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In everyday life, human produces a range of household waste that is dumped in special places and no one uses them. As it is known, after the processes of agricultural production it results a large amount of reusable by-products. Many of  them have economic value and can be used as a source of biogas (biomethane).

Biogas is made from agro wastes, forestry or animal waste as a result of fermentative activities of anaerobic microorganisms (bacteria).In order to obtain biogas, waste is mixed with large amounts of anaerobic microorganisms in the complete lack of air. In these conditions bacteria are developping very well and are able to convert organic waste into methane and carbon dioxide.

Some materials that apparently are no longer useful could be recycled (re-manufactured). Objects of metal, paper, glass, plastic and others can be recycled. This recycling would help save some plants, animals or  materials for manufacturing. For example, paper materials are used once and then are discarded. But if they are recycled there would be no need to use plants to make the paper.

Plastic Recycling plays a role in the relief of the earth to be polluted as plastics degrade in about 100 years and it no longer requires material for plastic to be extracted. By recycling, plastic does not cease, as with glass and metal materials.

Recently, I have read an article which reported on the issue of generating electricity that much of the UK waste should be simply burned. Burning waste instead of transporting them at a distance of up to 4,800 km for recycling, would have a much smaller impact on global warming.

Each year over 200,000 British stores tons of recyclables. Because of excessive demands from the UK and due to insufficient capacity of recycling, thousands of tonnes of recyclable materials are transported to China. In some places in the UK, people have to sort their waste into more than 7 containers, including those for food waste.

Suggestion was that electricity to be produced through combustion of waste but not through recycling process.

afxghfdx's profile pic

afxghfdx | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 3) eNoter

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Recycling is the process of reusing the things we have used before. If we want to understand in the practical approach then we should look towards our own not the enironment but our own room. The things we use and throw. The dust particles we collect after sharpening the pencil. It is being wasted. We should think how to reuse them. The best concept of the recycling comes from our own level. For every person, 2kg of wood (natural resource) is being wasted each day. We have not yet considered. We should not only manage things we use but also those things we doin't really use. We no more use them. I have collected 2500 of dot pen refills not hrown them from years thinking that they could be recycled and reused. I use lid pencil coz I don't wanna waste wood by sharpening. I have used a pencil from 3 years. I buy new and give to others if I like sth in market.

The main waste comes from the kitchen. The degradable waste I borrow and use as fertiliser and give to my neighbours. I don't have ground to plant but just ground to borrow the waste. I am just thinking my country people will be conscious one day one by one by influencing my educated neighbours. Recycling is the only process wa can save our planet earth. The industries if filtered the gas (smoke ) they produce. We can control the global warming.

I wish by such questions we could motivate people for the love to the planet not for themselves. This is hte only way we can let our generations to live in htis earth. Else it will be the end of the mankind to have control over the planet. A great destruction will arise and then all the development we have been dying for will collapse and then some another creature will ...............

mkcapen1's profile pic

mkcapen1 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

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Recycling is the environmentally friendly process of taking an item and instead of disposing of it, using it for another purpose.  Recycling is necessary if humans are to keep the planet healthy and reduce the carbon footprint of mankind on earth.

Non-recycled products end up loading landfills where the items take many years to decompose.  With the rise in population on our planet, the amount of trash has increased drastically.  Communities are running out of room in which to dispose of the material.  In addition, oil as well as other natural resources are used to make many of the initial products as well .  Massive consumption use of the products has led to severe damage to the planet.

Re-using items is the process of taking a particular item such as an empty baby food jar and using it for another purpose.  A washed baby food jar can be recycled to hold small items, make a craft project, and store small quantities of food.  Because it is made of glass its use could be extended for a long period as it continues to be recycled for many different uses.

Planned recycling includes a collection point for used products such as paper and cardboard, glass, plastic bottles, and aluminum cans.  Once gathered the items are shipped to a company that breaks them down into their original material.  They are decontaminated and processed for a different but similar use as the first product.  For example: Tire tread has been recycled into shoe soles and playground floor materials.

Another aspect of recycling is using food scraps for composting.  Organic waste can provide a healthy alternative for plants instead of tossing them in the trash. 


plaz's profile pic

plaz | Middle School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

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Recyling is the act of using resources over again without removing more resources from whatever the item is made from.  Not only does this save resources but also energy in the manufacturing and mining of those resources.

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