4 Reasons Why Cardboard Recycling Drop-Off Is Essential for the Environment
Cardboard makes up a huge portion of all household waste. It is a great material to recycle and can be turned into many different products.
When cardboard is not recycled, it ends up in landfills or incinerators and releases harmful greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Recycling cardboard reduces the need to cut down trees and helps to reduce deforestation, which contributes to global warming.
Knowing how to recycle cardboard will help your company comply with local recycling laws and save money on disposal costs if you’re a business owner. It will also help you earn consumers’ trust who want to shop with environmentally friendly brands.
Cellulose fibers extracted from trees make cardboard. Recycling cardboard conserves natural resources and protects the environment by reducing deforestation. It also reduces greenhouse gas emissions, requiring fewer resources to manufacture cardboard from scratch.
During the recycling process, cardboard recycling drop-off is shredded and mixed with water to create a pulp-like substance. Then, it is filtered to remove contaminants like tape, glue, and metal staples. “Ensuring that the end product is strong and high-quality is important.”
The pulped cardboard is reshaped into new paper products and then recycled again, repeated several times before the cellulose fibers are too short to be used as cardboard. The method uses much water, so protecting natural resources and minimizing pollution is vital.
Recycling also reduces methane, a powerful greenhouse gas contributing to climate change. When organic matter is sent to landfills, it decomposes and releases harmful gases like methane and carbon dioxide, contributing to environmental damage. By recycling more cardboard, we can help to protect our forests and the surrounding environment.
Cardboard recycling is green because it requires less energy than raw materials. It also saves natural resources like trees, oil, and water. Cardboard can be recycled many times without affecting its durability. It can be turned into paperboard, boxboard, or corrugated cardboard.
The production of new cardboard from raw materials needs a lot of water. However, the cardboard you recycle has already gone through that process, saving a lot of water. Recycling also saves methane, a greenhouse gas contributing to global warming.
You have to sort cardboard and remove any foreign materials to recycle it. For example, you should not recycle food-stained or waxed cardboard boxes. The greasy cardboard contaminates other recyclables, such as plastics and tape. Wet cardboard isn’t recyclable either because it can damage and jam machinery.
You should also check whether your cardboard has a recycling symbol on it. The signs usually include a triangle with three arrows printed on the box. If the container doesn’t have the logo, you should throw it away as garbage instead of recycling it. Remember that a cardboard bin is full when empty, so don’t overload it. Overloaded bins are a waste of money for recycling companies and waste collectors.
Reduces Energy Consumption
It takes a lot of energy to produce cardboard from raw materials. Recycling your cardboard waste saves the power to cut down trees and make new cardboard. This is a big part of why recycling is so important for the environment.
It also reduces the amount of water used to make cardboard from raw materials. Creating wood pulp for cardboard and other paper products uses thousands of gallons of water. This significant environmental impact can be easily avoided by establishing an ongoing relationship with your local recycling center for cardboard pickups or dropping off your waste.
Furthermore, it helps to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere from the decomposition of organic waste in landfills. This is another big issue because methane and carbon dioxide are greenhouse gases that negatively impact the environment and our climate.
If you are still determining whether your cardboard is recyclable, ensure it’s clean and free of styrofoam, oil, lots of tape, foam peanuts, and plastic delivery labels. These items can jam machines and are difficult to sort. When your cardboard is contaminated, it can’t be recycled and will end up in the trash. Clean cardboard can be recycled seven times! It saves 390 kWH of electricity, 1,100 gallons of oil, and over nine cubic yards of landfill space.
Cardboard is made of wood fibers from several sources, including pine and birch trees. It takes 17 trees to make a single ton of cardboard, which is why recycling it reduces greenhouse gas emissions significantly. Additionally, producing recycled cardboard requires less energy than making cardboard from scratch. It also uses far less fossil fuels.
Aside from reducing the need for new materials and helping to save energy costs, cardboard recycling also helps to protect local ecosystems. When cardboard is disposed of in landfills, it can decompose without the presence of oxygen and release methane. Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas contributing to global warming by trapping atmospheric heat. Businesses can help reduce the emission of greenhouse gases by recycling their cardboard instead of sending it to landfills.
Ensure your cardboard is free of contaminants like food residue, oil, lots of tape, foam peanuts, and plastic envelopes commonly used for delivery labels before putting it in the recycling bin. These contaminating materials can jam machines and sour the quality of recycled paper.
If you need help recycling cardboard in your facilities, contact a waste collection and recycling company that can help you. This will not only save you time and money, but it can also help your business to maintain its green reputation by keeping up with local regulations.