Welcome back to Bay Disposal’s Recycling Responsibly Series.
Every week we’re bringing you more earth-saving information about the different everyday items we could be Recycling. This week we’re looking at the process of Plastic recycling, and its impact on this planet which we all share.
Most plastic is non-biodegradable, meaning that it does not naturally disintegrate. Because we as a species brought plastic into existence in its present form, and popularized its various uses, it’s up to us to ensure its proper disposal. Eight million tons of plastic waste enter the ocean each year, causing devastating and avoidable damage, and with no decomposition in sight.
We can do better.
The process of recycling plastic is largely unchanged since the 1970s; plastic is sorted according to composition (the type of polymer), then chipped down into a sea of tiny, plastic bits. These plastic chips are then melted down into pellets, which can then be repurposed into new plastic consumer products such as outdoor furniture or polyethylene bags.
The challenges occur during the melting process, if the polymers have not been properly sorted. Different types of polymers are comprised of different materials, and when melted down, they can separate like oil and water. That’s why it is so important to check the labels on plastic products, and keep our guide handy when determining whether your plastic waste is recyclable.
Another challenge is that not all plastic has those helpful symbols or numbers – like tableware. The plastic utensils we use at fast food chains and picnics seldom wear these badges, and as a result, rarely get recycled. Tell your friends, family, even the strangers at the neighboring picnic table – yes, they are recyclable!
So, what is the solution? It’s not an easy one.
We as a species have created a mess, and we as a species must work hard to clean it up. Only by making the switch to longer-lasting, microwave-safe, yes-you-have-to-wash-that tableware can we turn a corner on this lifestyle of laziness. That, and utilizing the recycling curbside pickup offered by companies like Bay Disposal & Recycling!
It’s more work, but if it results in a better world for everyone, isn’t it worth it?
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This post first appeared on Recycling Responsibly: What Types Of Plastic Are Recyclable?, please read the originial post: here