Saving and Making Money from Recycling
Rufino Rios (The Freeman) - June 11, 2016 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - In recent years there has been a vigorous campaign to mitigate human consumptiveness of things. The crusade springs from the fact that the world’s resources are fast depleting due to rapid increase in the human population and people’s wasteful ways. The phrase “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” has since become a global motto.

Recycling is really a sensible idea. There are benefits to gain from it. It is a good way to conserve natural resources and to keep the environment green.

Obviously, reducing consumption extends the availability of resources, and so does reusing and recycling non-consumable items. People need to come to realize that most of the planet’s resources are limited and will be used up in due time. Even resources that supposedly replenish themselves – like trees, for example – could not cope up with the runaway rate of consumption.

The new resources-conscious mindset shall start at home. Practices that are proven to work at home will eventually be adopted by the industries, the bigger consumers. Industry leaders too have homes.

Reduced consumption – that also results from reusing and recycling things – bring various real benefits.  The website http://midcityscrap.com lists some of the bigger benefits: 

Reduce Carbon Emissions

Recycling helps to reduce carbon emissions, otherwise known as greenhouse gasses. Whatever stance one takes on the issue of global warming, most people agree that everyone need to do their part to lessen the impact of pollution and carbon emissions. Companies that use recycled aluminum save 95 percent energy in the production of new aluminum products compared to companies that use raw materials. For every ton of paper that is recycled, 17 whole trees are saved. This doesn’t just save energy – it also helps to combat carbon gas emissions because each tree can remove a good part of carbon dioxide in the air.

Lessen the Burden on Landfills

Our landfills are overflowing at an alarming rate and communities are quickly running out of space. Communities that are near the ocean have been dumping trash into the water for decades, and the oceans are gasping from this practice. As much as 60 to75 percent of the garbage that ends up in the landfills could actually be recycled. What that means is that if everyone took the time to recycle, 60 to75 percent less land space would be needed for garbage in the future.

Improve Groundwater Quality

The garbage that is in landfills can affect the local groundwater. Most landfills do not treat the garbage in any way, garbage is simply thrown into a big hole and buried underground. Much of the trash that is thrown in the landfill is not biodegradable or environmentally-friendly, and the contaminants can seep into the water supply that reaches the homes. This happens when rain or other runoff water from landfills makes its way into ponds, rivers, lakes or streams. It not only damages the already fragile ecosystems, but it makes the water supply dangerous to drink or use.

Reduce Air Pollution

When companies choose to use recycled materials that come from paper products, plastics and metals instead of using raw materials, they reduce the amount of toxins that are released in the air. When these materials are processed in their raw form, they add a significant amount of carbon emissions into the air. Individuals who recycle materials make it easier for companies to purchase quality recycled products to use in their factories.

Increases Energy Efficiency

It takes twice as much energy to burn plastic as it does to recycle it. It also takes 64 percent more energy to make paper than it does to recycle and reuse it. Scientists have shown that by just recycling one pound of steel, enough energy can be saved to run a 60-watt bulb for a whole day. It might not sound like a lot, but it all adds up.

Increases Property Value

One of the best ways to increase the value of a property is to recycle. Communities that recycle reduce the need for landfills. Landfills lower property values because nobody wants to live near a smelly garbage dump. The more neighborhoods recycle, the fewer number of landfills the city will need. The little bit of effort it takes to separate and recycle home trash each week will eventually pay off for everyone in the community.

Recycling is Good Business

Homeowners aren’t the only ones that benefit from recycling. Processing plants and industrial factories can save a lot of money on energy and material costs by using recycled materials instead of raw, natural resources. Recycling can also help to reduce solid waste costs and can become a regular stream of added revenue when scrap metals, plastics and other materials are recycled on a regular basis.

At home, recycling makes sense. It can actually help the family to save or even make money. By recycling plastic product containers, for example, there is no need to spend money on new foodkeepers and beverage jars. The money saved could go to the other home necessities.

And there is a demand for used tin cans and plastic and glass bottles. Junk yards want the pieces that aren’t recycled at home. Car parts, copper coils, used computer boards etc. can be sold.

Considering the many practical benefits that can be derived from a simple practice like recycling, it’s a wonder why it should even necessitate a global campaign to get people to do it. Homes, entire communities, and the world have nothing to lose and all to gain from recycling. 

Reusing Plastic Bottles for Crafts

There are so many great ways to re-use plastic bottles at home and keep these out of the garbage bin. Pop bottles, water bottles, vinegar bottles, juice bottles, milk jugs etc. can all be reused in creative ways.

In the early 1900s, a fellow named Baekeland invented plastic. Plastic was inexpensive to make and long lasting. Because it was so long lasting, it served many wonderful purposes. Perhaps too many, because decades later we are faced with landfills full of plastic.

For this reason, reusing and recycling things are important. Plastic bottles are a good start. It prevents build-up of waste plastic. Recycling existing plastic stuff into new products, rather than creating new ones, preserves natural resources and keeps the landfills from being overwhelmed.

There have been warnings against the safety of reusing plastic bottles for food and drink. Plastic water bottles are not supposed to be refilled for drinking. But, it is okay to reuse plastic bottles in crafts.

It is interesting to note that even people who have moved away from buying plastic will still accumulate it in their recycling bins. Now and then they get it from friends and family. Thus, there may be no need to buy plastic bottles for making crafts.

1. Plastic Bottle Bracelets

This fun bracelet is perfect for any teenage girl and it is made by reusing soda or water bottles. The reused plastic bottles give the bracelet just the right amount of stiffness. With some fabric or felt and a dose of inner creativity, this cute thing comes to be.

2. Terrarium

Two-liter bottles can be reused or repurposed by turning them into a terrarium. It’s a perfect craft for kids.

3. Aqua Spikes

Drip watering helps avoid run-off and allows the water to be absorbed deeply into the soil getting to the roots of the plant. Reusing plastic bottles to accomplish this is a win-win situation.

4. Coin Purse    

This clever reuse of plastic bottles to create coin purse is ingenious. It is reminiscent of a little monster that could be adorned with eyes and a nose.

5. Knitting Loom

Larger plastic bottles can be reused to make these awesome knitting looms. How many people would have thought of making a knitting loom from repurposed plastic?

6. Artsy Box

It is another crafty and cool way to weave plastic to make art. Green plastic is used and woven together to form a box.

7. Privacy Screen

At first glance it is hard to believe this is plastic. It looks like glass. It’s a beautiful reuse of plastic bottles in the home to make a privacy screen.

8. Crafty Vase

It’s a cute, crafty and inspirational way to make a piece of trash into art. Nobody would ever know these cute beads were ever an old bottle (unless you tell them). Bracelets, necklaces, or bead curtains would all look wonderful crafted from these spectacular plastic bottle beads.

9. Ottoman Chair

With a little bit of creativity and patience, useful stuffs can be made with something that is going to be discarded. This ottoman is not fancy at all, but it’s something that can be made with recycled plastic bottles.

(www.feltmagnet.com, www.icreativeideas.com)

 

RODRIGO DUTERTE
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