Is It Worth the Trouble to Recycle?

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By Mandy T Jones

Today, it's very common to be told that we all need to do our part in saving the earth by recycling. Do we genuinely have to do this? Think about the fact that a single plastic shopping bag can take about 1,000 years to fully decay. That's quite a long time, and don't forget that's only one plastic bag. Compute the number of trash bags you use annually in addition to those plastic shopping bags. Then multiply that by everybody in the country... it all adds up. A better idea would be to recycle the shopping bag instead of letting it sit in the landfill slowly decomposing. Plenty of things can be recycled such as shopping bags being used to make clothing and old tires being used in creating children's playgrounds. Majority of things are prospects for reusing.

Fifteen years ago, the town of Lemoore, California started a really stringent recycling program. Residents had to follow the recycling rules otherwise they faced fines. Needless to say, a lot of folks complied and recycling truly helped this town. They were able to put up a new playground as well as construct a water park. They were able to fund other municipal necessities such as a police department and pre-school scholarships via their recycling program. Hence, not only does recycling help to reuse waste, it can also make money for other things.

Most likely, you feel that you as a single person can't make a big difference by your recycling but just imagine how much the world would change if everyone did some recycling. We could reduce the size of most landfills which, in turn, would save money in operating them and prevent damage to the local environment. In addition, recycling can help to raise money for poor areas while benefiting the environment. Everyone gains.

Even if the planet is not a priority for you, remember that the animals have to live here too. They are suffering due to troubles in the environment including global warming. Taking even minute amounts of time to recycle can help to make the planet a better place for later generations.

Consider how long each thing you throw away takes to decompose. As said earlier, a plastic bag will take roughly 1,000 years to decay. Items like disposable diapers and milk bottles can take hundreds of years to fully break down while glass and styrofoam may never completely disintegrate. There's no reason to throw away these things when they can so easily be recycled.

Of course, right now we don't have the technology to recycle a few items but this could change later. For now, there's absolutely no reason we can't recycle plastics, metals, and glass. It's not difficult and doesn't cost you anything so why not help preserve the environment? If every person helped, a ton of good would be done.

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