The recycling benefits of buying new products are obvious to anyone who has ever shopped for something to use in their home, yard, or garden. There are fewer items on the market today that aren’t made of plastic, ceramic, or other natural and recycled materials. Recycling decreases the landfill waste created by throwing away everyday goods. It is also less expensive to produce new products from materials recycled than it is to produce new products from raw materials that are non-recycled.
One of the recycling benefits for consumers is that recycled products last longer. Many items that can be recycled can’t be. Glass for example, doesn’t break down very easily in landfills and so requires a lot of energy to manufacture. Plastic, metal, and other non-biodegradable items don’t break down at all in landfills either. And so they sit there, taking up space that could be used to create new products or to store more waste.
The recycling benefits saves energy. It reduces the amount of natural resources (energy) that are needed to create new products. A lot of the energy used to manufacture recycled goods is produced from renewable resources like wind, water, and solar power. It also reduces the greenhouse gas emissions released from automobiles and other fuel-guzzlers.
Another recycling benefit that most people aren’t even aware of, is that recycling eliminates the need for new products made from plastic, glass, aluminum cans, and paper. This means that more landfills are not needed, and less water pollution occurs. With no more plastic bottles and aluminum cans in our landfills, we don’t need to use any more natural resources to produce those products. As more recycling takes place, the less landfills will be needed, and thus, the less water pollution will occur.
Recycling creates jobs. More recycling leads to more jobs. Less recycling creates fewer jobs. As more people are able to make a living by recycling their old cans and bottles, more people have employment. Not only does this lead to more natural resources being utilized, it also leads to more employment opportunities.
Lastly, recycling reduces the amount of natural resources that are needed to produce new products. The amount of natural resources needed to produce new products can go down as more recycling takes place. As more raw materials are recycled, less natural resources are needed to create new products. As this happens, the need to mine for more natural resources lessens.