DON’T JUST DUMP YOUR PLASTIC… RECYCLE IT

Updated: Mar 23


We all know the reasons plastic is bad for the environment

A) it is made from petroleum and

B) once manufactured, it stays for the longest time.

Recycling is the means to push its end of life farther by giving it a second life.


WHY IS RECYCLING SO IMPORTANT?

A single decision whether to dump our plastics in the bin or dump them into recycling bins can make a big difference. Trashing them will most likely take them straight to landfills. Landfills are the nastiest places where waste sits for years, piled one garbage bag on top of the other leaching toxins and emitting toxic methane gas to the atmosphere. Plastics on the other hand contribute to harmful toxins leaching to the environment when landfilled. Plastic additives like BPA and others which have been linked to various health hazards leach out in significant concentrations from landfills, polluting our soil and water and eventually even entering our food cycle. To know more about harmful effects of these additives please visit- https://www.theecoloopshop.com/educate-yourself/plastics-curse-to-human-health

Incineration involves burning of plastics down to ash. There is obvious danger of air pollution during the process. Sophisticated filters are used to filter the gasses before being released to the atmosphere, but their benefits are questionable. A 2016 report shows that equivalent of 12 million tons of CO2 was released due to waste incineration in the U.S. and a large portion came from plastics. Plus, incineration does not reduce the need to manufacture new plastics. Burning a type of waste that can be recycled is not a rational way of handling the problem.

Environmental impacts of discarded plastic cannot be taken lightly. It only makes sense to recycle whatever waste possible as it saves resources that would be needed to otherwise produce new products.


WHAT IS PLASTIC RECYCLED TO?

Commonly plastics are identified by their Resin Identification Codes ranging from 1 to 7 inside a chasing arrow usually marked at the bottom of a plastic product. Based on these codes we can find out if we can recycle our plastic product or is it good for nothing and will get landfilled at the end of its life.


Note- Instances mentioned under the title "used for" may vary. Always refer to the RIC code (numbers mentioned inside a triangle, ranging from 1 to 7)


One needs some amount of commitment to practice recycling regularly as you are needed to clean the plastics and collect them at home before you carry them to the recycling centers near you, but it is a breeze once you are aware of the difference that it is going to make. It is best to inculcate the values in children and adults alike by practicing it at home.


EASY OPTION FOR RECYCLING!! START NOW!

There are some recycling companies that offer free pickup from your home, office or schools like HOMECYCLE in Dubai. You can visit http://homecycle.org/ and request pickup with a click and your plastic waste will be picked from your door step.

If we don’t recycle now, then when will we?


Points to remember when recycling plastics:

  • Clear the plastics of all the food or nonfood non-plastic substances before recycling. (If you recycle with Homecycle you dont have to do that too!! It is that easy with Homecycle)

  • Bioplastic is not recyclable. If mixed with conventional plastic while recycling, then it can prove to be a contaminant. The entire batch of plastic in this case must be landfilled!! Hence take care that you dont include bioplastics into the plastic recycling !!

  • Bottles and bottle caps are often made of different types of plastics. You may be required to separate them before dropping recyclable plastics. Check for regulations with your nearest Recycling facility or where you plan to recycle your plastics.

  • MOST IMPORTANT!! START RECYCLING NOW!! WE NEED TO SAVE OUR RESOURCES FOR THE FUTURE GENERATIONS TO COME.



REFERENCES

https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2018-01/documents/2018_complete_report.pdf

https://www.nap.edu/read/5803/chapter/5#36

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2873017/

https://www.no-burn.org/burning-plastic-incineration-causes-air-pollution-dioxin-emissions-cost-overruns/

https://www.efe.com/efe/english/world/un-warns-globally-only-9-percent-of-plastic-waste-is-recycled/50000262-3638548

https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2017/07/plastic-produced-recycling-waste-ocean-trash-debris-environment/

https://www.baydisposal.com/recycling-responsibly-types-plastic-recyclable/

https://www.dec.ny.gov/docs/materials_minerals_pdf/plasticpam.pdf

https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/advantages-and-disadvantages-incineration.php

https://earth911.com/recycling-center-search-guides/

http://www.styrene-uae.com/recycling/


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