Editorial Feature

Things You Didn't Know You Could Recycle


While there has been increased effort to recycle materials in order to reduce energy consumption, raw material production and land fill. It is widely known that plastic and glass bottles are easily recycled. However, there are lots of products that can make a large impact to the environment if recycled regularly. Below is a list of products that you may not know could be recycled, or products which are often forgotten about.

  • Toothpaste boxes. According to Recycle Now, a study showed that if everyone in the United Kingdom recycled a single toothpaste box, enough energy could be saved to run a fridge in over 2000 homes for a whole year. This extraordinary figure shows the impact a small gesture can have.
  • Similarly, one deodorant aerosol recycled from each person in the UK could run a TV for over 151000 homes per year. This is because these can are usually made from aluminium which can be easily recycled.
  • Inhalers are an essential part of life for many people however this leads to many outdated inhalers being thrown away each year. Over 46 million people discard their old inhalers instead of recycling them. Inhalers are constructed of plastic and aluminium and therefore can be recycled. Most pharmacies participate in collecting and recycling old inhalers in order to reduce this waste.
  • Recycling and cosmetics are not usually spoken of in the same sentence, however, cosmetic packaging are made of materials that can be easily recycled. Check the label of your lipsticks, compacts and tubs to find out whether the product can be recycled. Also, some larger cosmetic companies, such as Lush and MAC, have their own recycling programs to help reduce their carbon footprint.
  • Something as small as an air freshener aerosol canister can make a huge difference to reducing waste. If one of these aluminium tubes is recycled by everyone in the UK, the energy saved would be enough to power 876000 vacuums a year.
  • Sadly, according to recent data, over 50000 mattresses are discarded and thrown in landfill in the United States each year. By recycling a mattress at a local recycling facility would greatly reduce the amount of waste and energy lost. Mattresses can be transformed in to fiber for metal and woodchips. They can even be used for clothing and recycled foam. Online websites like bye bye mattress can show the nearest recycling facility to drop off your old mattress.
  • Online sites like HolidayLEDs.com allow you to trade in your old Christmas lights for a discount in their store. The Christmas Light Recycling Program is available all the time and is a great way to get rid of clutter while also saving the environment.

There are many small items around homes which can be easily recycled and make a large impact on the environment. Always check the labels on products to see if they can be recycled. The smallest act can make a huge difference on energy and waste reduction and therefore it is important to the conscientious of what, exactly, you are throwing away.

Works Cited

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