If you throw a plastic bottle in the trash today, that bottle will sit in a landfill—or worse, float in the ocean—for thousands of years.
No one knows what Earth—or humans—will be like in thousands of years. But that plastic bottle will still be a plastic bottle!
So why do Americans use 2,500,000 plastic bottles every hour? And why do they throw most of them in the trash? They can be recycled!
Here are some other “trash” items that instead can be recycled:
Cereal box or other kinds of cardboard and paper:
Making a ton of new paper from recycled paper saves up to 17 trees and uses 50 percent less water than does creating new paper from trees.
If we recycled all our aluminum cans for one year, we could save enough energy to light Washington, D.C. for 3.7 years.
The amount of aluminum currently recycled in 1 year is enough to rebuild our entire airplane commercial fleet every 6 months.
The energy saved by recycling one glass bottle can light a 100-watt light bulb for four hours or run a computer for 30 minutes.
Food cans and other metals:
In 2008, Americans recycled 7 million tons of metals, eliminating the equivalent of nearly 25 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, or taking 4.5 million cars off the road for one year.
It’s important to recycle or reuse as many materials as possible. It saves energy. It saves Earth’s resources. It saves the land and the oceans from being over-run with garbage!