If you follow the news on climate change, the situation seems pretty bleak. People sometimes ask us if recycling really matters, all things considered. Does putting jars and cardboard boxes in the recycling bin each week really do anything to save the planet?
The answer to this question is absolutely yes. We’re not scientists ourselves – we provide trash collection services in CT – but we can reliably say that household recycling results first and foremost in less materials being taken to the landfill. Landfill space is a limited resource. If we had to put all the items that are now being recycled into the landfill, the landfills would be filled up much faster than they currently are. This creates a problem for everyone.
Keeping materials out of landfills helps protect our environment. This is because when a piece of trash is in the landfill, it steadily breaks down until the components it is made of return to the soil and leach away into ground water supplies. Diverting trash from incenerators means less ash, greenhouse gas emissions, and other harmful environmental impacts.
Recycling also helps the economy. Most people never see nor suspect the amount of labor involved in collecting, processing, and returning recyclable materials to the production stream. The EPA reports that more than 1.1 million people are employed in the recycling and reuse industries. These individuals collectively earn about $37 billion, which is largely spent in local neighborhood economies.
Recycling in CT: What’s the Current Situation
Connecticut reflects the national trends in recycling. Although as much as 80% of all residential trash could be recycled, the amount of trash that is actually recycled is closer to 30%. This is a situation where every household’s individual choices can help make a difference. Your local trash collection company’s recycling service may enable you to easily recycle glass, newspaper, cardboard, plastics and more.