Recycling is the reprocessing of materials into new products. Recycling prevents the waste of potentially useful materials, reduces the consumption of raw materials and reduces energy usage, and hence greenhouse gas emissions, compared to virgin production.
It saves energy and reduces greenhouse gases. Recycling aluminum uses 95% less energy than producing aluminum from ore. Recycling plastic saves 70% of the energy used in creating new plastic, and paper recycling saves 40% of the energy required to make a new product. Glass and metals have less dramatic but very significant energy savings when recycled feedstock is used.
Recycling also reduces the amount of materials ending up in landfills - it’s been estimated that as much as 80% of materials currently trashed could be recycled or put to other uses.
There are two common household methods of recycling. In curbside collection, consumers leave recyclable materials (either presorted or all recyclables together (single stream) in front of their property to be collected by a recycling vehicle. With a "bring" or carry-in system, the householder takes the materials to collection points, such as transfer stations or civic amenity sites.
Where Can I Recycle?
Civic participation in recycling programs varies across the north central Texas region. Please check www.timetorecycle.com to see your city has a current or planned recycling program.
In addition, many schools, churches and cities have recycling bins for paper, cans and bottles. Use these options if your city does not provide curbside services.
What Can Be Recycled?
Most cities recycle paper (newspapers, office paper, and cardboard), aluminum cans, and some plastics. Others also may recycle glass bottles, more types of plastics, and cans. Be sure to you know what items your city accepts before you put them in the bag/container.
HINT - Go to www.earth911.org for information about where you can recycle all types of products. Using your zipcode and the item you need to recycle, it can find the closest option.
What Can't Be Recycled?
Household chemicals, electronics, batteries and prescription medications should never be recycled. Look for announcements of regional disposal days for these items.