Today is “America Recycles Day” – a nationally-recognized day dedicated to promoting and celebrating recycling in the United States. This post is written by Greenovator Susan Cascino, Recycling Policy Director in the City of Boston’s Environment Department.
Greenovate urges the Boston community to join communities across the country to recycle more and waste less. When we rethink, reduce, reuse, and recycle, we help preserve our city and our planet for future generations.
In Boston, you can mix recyclable materials together and place them on the curb outside of your home on your recycling day. You have a few different options if you want to recycle at home. Click here to learn all the ways, and what can and cannot be recycled.
The City of Boston wants to make it easy for you to handle waste responsibly, so we created a trash and recycling app to view your collection schedule, set up notifications, search recyclable materials, and more. Click here to explore the City of Boston trash and recycling app.
Recycling Saves Money
Did you know that when you recycle you save public tax dollars? The more you recycle, the more money the City saves. Last year, Boston residents recycled 37,000 tons of bottles, cans and plastic, which cost $184,000 dollars. Had all those bottles cans and plastic been incinerated, it would have cost the City $2,360,000 dollars. That is a savings of more than $2 million dollars.
Recycling isn’t just a responsible choice that saves cities and businesses money; it also preserves our natural resources.
Recycling Prevents Pollution
When recycled materials are used in place of virgin materials during manufacturing, we avoid the environmental damage caused by mining for metals, drilling for petroleum, and harvesting trees.
- Producing recycled white paper creates 74 percent less air pollution and 35 percent less water pollution than producing paper from virgin fibers.
- Using recycled cans instead of extracting ore to make aluminum cans produces 95 percent less air pollution and 97 percent less water pollution.
- Recycling and remanufacturing are 194 times more effective in reducing greenhouse gas emissions than landfilling and virgin manufacturing.
Recycling Saves Energy
By recycling about 30 percent of our waste every year, Americans save the equivalent of 11.9 billion gallons of gasoline, and reduce the greenhouse gas equivalent of taking 25 million cars off the road.
Recycling Creates Jobs
For every one job at a landfill, there are ten jobs in recycling processing and 25 jobs in recycling-based manufacturing. The recycling industry employs more workers than the auto industry.
Celebrate Recycling – #RecycleBOS
In a proclamation for America Recycles Day, President Barack Obama says that all of us want “to ensure our children and grandchildren live in a clean and sustainable world, and recycling is a pivotal way each of us can do our part.” As individuals, we can simply choose the recycling bin more often than the garbage can, our president urges. “Businesses can work to reduce their overall waste and establish recycling programs.”