Today is America Recycles Day. Across the nation, thousands of local events will be held ranging from electronics collections and document-shredding events to plastic bag collections and recycled art shows.
“Throughout November, an estimated 2 million people will join in the celebration,” Teresa Kurtz, director of the Iowa Recycling Association, wrote in a guest column Thursday. “Amid all of the fun — and there is a lot of fun involved — it’s important to consider the serious side of why recycling really matters.
“For municipal solid waste, today’s recycling rates stand at roughly 34 percent. At these rates, recycling is a multibillion-dollar industry that employs millions of Americans and helps advance our clean energy economy.
“Much of this cannot happen without public participation in recycling systems. Through the simple act of recycling and buying recycled products, consumers can create the momentum that builds materials markets and fills the supply chain of recycled (raw) materials that can help fuel our economy.
“But there is more opportunity. According to a report published by the non-profit organization As You Sow, it is estimated that the value of just-discarded packaging in the United States is worth more than $11 billion.”
What are your recycling habits? Do you recycle more than you did a few years ago? What would help you recycle even more?
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