Ever wondered how much waste is recycled? Maybe you are keen to separate your recyclables from non-recyclables, or maybe you wonder if your four pounds per day of trash makes any difference. Even though most waste is recyclable, only a small portion gets recycled. According to an EPA estimate, while 75% of waste is recyclable, people only recycle 30%. Most of the waste produced remains wasted forever. Yet there is gold in the muck. Let’s dive in!
So, How Much Recyclable Waste Is Not Being Recycled?
The EPA classifies two types of waste. One is material such as paper and glass, and the second is textiles and product, which includes durable and non-durable goods. The combined waste generated in 2018 was 292.4 million metric tons, as per the EPA data. Only 94 million of this waste was recycled, representing a 32.1% recycling rate.
Although most of the waste is recyclable, most is not recycled and ends up in landfills. Some types of waste, such as plastics, end up in waterways, threatening aquatic life and water transport. There is more potential for recycling and more people need to be proactive about it.
Why 30% Rather Than 75%?
One reason the recycling rate is 30% and not 75% is due to a lack of awareness. As a homeowner, you may be unaware of how to separate your waste to make recycling easier. Trash and recycling services can provide easy-to-follow instructions on how to separate waste.
Another reason is the cost of recycling for businesses. If recycling costs more than the results, it may not make economic sense to most companies. However, trash and recycling services have experience in recycling and will use waste to generate an income while also protecting the environment.
How Can We Improve Recycling Rates?
The first step to increasing your recycling rate is learning to separate waste to make recycling easy. Although you may perceive that your generated waste is too small to make a difference, when added to your neighbors, it’s a massive amount when combined.
You should also hire a reputable company to provide trash and waste services. Doing so will allow you to relax because it’ll ensure your waste goes to the right place. You’ll be part of generating sustainable income while protecting the environment.
Here at Opdenaker, we offer reliable and efficient trash and waste services to communities and families. Contact us to convert muck to gold and save our land and waterways.