Recycling plastic is easy, right? If it's made of plastic or has plastic, then you just toss it in the nearest recycling bin. Except it's not that easy.
The problem is that all plastic is not the same, and many plastic products that end up as waste are not easily recyclable. And some aren't recyclable at all. So, what do you do?
When Plastic Poses Problems for the Planet
We've noted in previous posts here that the actual amount of plastic that is properly recycled only adds up to about nine percent in the United States. And because that's about three million tons, it means that over 33 million tons of plastic waste ends up in landfills, being incinerated, or worse.
The "worse" is either plastic waste that ends up in the oceans or in illegal dump sites all over the world.
An ongoing problem that we have in America is what some industry experts refer to as the practice of "wishcycling." This term refers to the act of placing non-recyclable items in with other materials that actually are recyclable, thinking or hoping that all of it will be duly recycled.
Unfortunately, it doesn't work that way.
As Greenmatters says it on their website,
The big problem with wishcycling is that it creates more waste. If non-recyclable materials contaminate recyclable materials, then those items may not be able to be recycled. In some cases, the whole load of items become so contaminated that the entire batch has to be tossed and thrown into a landfill.
In other words, whenever we unknowingly or unwittingly mix non-recyclable plastic with any other recyclable materials, not only does the plastic still not get recycled, but there is the risk of contaminating all the other materials with it, preventing them from being properly processed.
We are not always to blame, however.
A lack of education and a poor marking system adds to the confusion and general lack of knowledge and awareness around "non-recyclable" plastics.
Plastic Waste: Check the Code and Chuck the Rest
In some communities, plastic recycling has been largely minimized or even curtailed completely. It's not that most plastic cannot be recycled, strictly speaking, but there is either no existing process available to process those plastics, or no viable market for them.
It's an unfortunate but real dynamic in the realm of waste management and recycling: if the cost of recycling cannot be recouped by selling the end product, companies cannot afford to do so.
On one hand, this is simple economics. On the other hand, one could argue that it is due to a lack of innovation and necessary technology. However, while much of this is changing as we noted in other articles here, there is still things we can do to improve our own plastic recycling practices.
Here is an illustrated checklist with five tips for better plastic recycling:
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Following these simple guidelines is especially important if your residential waste management provider uses what is known as "single-stream" recycling. Single-stream recycling is the collection of all recyclables in one container. This is quite a bit different than a multi-stream recycling process such as what is practiced in most of the state of California, for example.
Multi-stream recycling refers to the process of separating recyclables by material type prior to collection. These recycled materials are then kept separate throughout the whole of the recycling process, according to one source.
Fortunately, the overall outlook for plastic production as well as innovative recycling and reuse technologies is rapidly improving. However, we are still saddled with millions upon millions of tons of waste plastic that may simply end up in landfills or be incinerated, sometimes for energy generation.
When You Have Large Amounts of Plastic Waste Turn to Junk King
There is a better way to dispose of your bulk plastic waste disposal than simply placing it all into a recycling dumpster somewhere, or, possibly worse, hauling it to a landfill.
Despite the existing limitations of plastic recycling in many regions in the U.S., Junk King has the processes and industry relationships to ensure that as much of your junk and waste as possible is recycled, reused, or repurposed.
That is because being green has always been at the heart Junk King's corporate mission and we continue to be green today. In fact, from the time our company was founded back in 2005, we have been wholly committed to recycling up to 60 percent or more of everything we pick up from every junk removal job.
Being green, environmentally conscious, and eco-friendly is much more than marketing talk for Junk King - it's simply what we do.
Every day. With every job.
Recycling Plastic and Renewable Waste with Junk King
At Junk King, we believe that recycling and reuse are the most important paths for junk disposal. But recycling junk and waste items isn't easy for everyone.
That's why we can provide you with a truly simple and efficient option for all your recycling needs.
Junk King provides professional junk hauling services to remove any types of junk including anything made with glass, metal, paper, and plastic - and we'll even remove your old furniture, yard waste, and excess garbage, as well.
We also have the equipment and teams to remove large refrigerators and other appliances - even down stairways, up basement steps, or out through a garage.
Whatever type of junk you have, we will always try to recycle everything and anything you have. We provide an eco-friendly junk removal service to help you get rid of any unwanted junk, large trash items, or any old appliances.
So, got junk? Junk King can help you get it out of the way!
Our professional and insured junk removal team will show up at your home or office, and we'll call 15 to 30 minutes before we arrive. Once there, we’ll give you a free estimate based on how much room your junk takes up in our truck.
You point and we haul your unwanted items into our junk removal trucks, with no hidden fees. It’s as simple as 1, 2, 3.
Make an appointment with us by booking online above or by calling 1.888.888.JUNK (5865).