Recycling feels good. But recycling alone is not the answer:
Ok, let’s talk about recycling.
Recycling is a huge and imperative part of the future of the zero waste movement! Don’t you love recycling?
The entire process is fascinating… and it makes us feel so much better about what we consume. We are all good people here. But we have needs, right? Recycling is reassuring to us.
And yes, real recycling is a good thing 😉
But of course, there is a big BUT here…
The most important thing to realize is that recycling does come with a host of its own problems.
Most people do not understand or even realize the amount of energy and resources recycling takes (check out our youtube playlist to experience recycling first-hand). Issues to know more about are: health and safety conditions of the workers involved, the toxic byproducts that recycling processes put out into the environment, and the actual energy and resources it takes to run a recycle plant.
Aside from that, you still have to wonder how much of what you put in the bin actually gets recycled at the end? Merf.
That said, you can rest assured that, overall, recycling uses less resources, does less harm, and creates fewer toxins than making new items from “raw” materials.
Did I mention the fact that our planet is just plain running out of many of the raw materials needed to sustain these habits? AND that landfill waste is killing innocent wildlife of all varieties, slowly and painfully? This includes inadvertently killing precious endangered species- and some species are actually endangered because of trash. Yeah, that’s going to be a problem…
Greatly reducing waste before it is created is the most important step.
Once we understand that recycling alone comes with its own set of dangers and setbacks, it becomes clear.
Overall, let us change our focus to reducing and reusing… and RESPECTING…
Thanks for being a guardian!
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