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Reduce, reuse, recycle

Recycling popular locally, across the world

By JAMIE HOPPS The Daily Jeffersonian Published: February 8, 2017 12:00 AM

Reduce, reuse, recycle. Three words most people have been taught since kindergarten, to help do their part to save the environment.

In Guernsey County, Southeastern Ohio's Joint Solid Waste Management in Cambridge has recycling trailers throughout the country and surrounding areas that are very popular.

Recycling has transformed from a habit into a lifestyle, and not just at home. Many companies are jumping on the bandwagon too. Packages are getting lighter with zero waste goals in mind.

Businesses worldwide are becoming conscious about what happens at the end of a product's life and where it will end up. Italy, France and the United Kingdom are at the cutting-edge of this ideology. An idea called anaerobic digestion. It's a collection system designed to ensure that items are properly re-circled back into the economy.

California is a leader in anaerobic digestion facilities. In Sunnyvale, Calif. they are testing a new split-cart recycling station which separates food scraps, residual trash and even yard trimmings.

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Composting is even becoming vogue again, through the U.S. Composting Council. It predicts that only five percent of the 26 million tons of sustenance waste or compost, stays out of the landfills. This leaves a large number of materials that could have been transformed into nutrients for the soil. Some countries and states are making composting mandatory and even offering services to collect it.

Other policies are changing from paper to digital and material bans, like plastics. Recycling gives many people the chance to be innovative. A student from Sweden, built a robot in 2013 that can recycle buildings made out of concrete and rebar. In Sacramento, there is a machine that takes 100 tons of organic material and turns it into energy.

Plastics and organic waste are not the only things being recycled. Cigarettes are also being recycled through Terra Cyde's Cigarette Waste Brigade. The tobacco and paper are composted while the filters get recycled into industrial products.

One of the biggest industrial waste thumbprints comes from electronics. Almost all electronic devices can be recycled and most major electronic stores, like Best Buy and Staples, accept them.

The EPA reported that "recycling 15 glass bottles saves enough energy to power a laptop for 31.3 hours; recycled paper production creates 74 percent less air pollution and 35 percent less water pollution. Every pound of recycled plastic used reduces greenhouse emissions by 71 percent."

While an individual may not be able to build a recycling robot or turn organic waste into energy, they can be a part of the recycling trend. Waste Management's website www.wm.com/ thinkgreen/ what-can-i-recycle.jsp has a list of what all can be recycled and tips for where to take them.

For a full calendar schedule for Southeastern Ohio's Joint Solid Waste Management's recycling trailers, go to wasteabate.org or call 740-732-5493 to see when the trailers will be in the area.


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