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What happens to recycled material?

November 12, 2011
By Robert M. Ungerer , The Post-Journal

Recycling means using a product over again. My goal in this article is to simply describe processes to make recycled material ready to be used again. Most of the developed world has embraced recycling of familiar products like plastic, tin cans, newspaper, glass and aluminum cans. Still controversy arises when it is pointed out that the expense to collect, sort and process products for recycling is more than the cost to transport products to a landfill. Recycling is popular in the United States because massive amounts of trash are kept out of landfills, millions of people are employed to recycle and less energy is used to create products than if new, virgin raw materials are used. Statistics reveal the United States produces enough trash to fill 1,000 football fields 30 stories high each year. If all the Sunday newspapers in the country were recycled each week 500,000 fewer trees would be needed to produce newsprint.



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