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Posts tagged ‘styrofoam’

Let’s Talk about Recycling

You may have heard that much is changing in the recycling world these days. For the last couple decades, China has accepted the majority of the world’s recycled materials– whether that’s plastic, paper, cardboard, or metal.

Our recycling programs evolved over that time to encourage more and more recycling of more and more items, with not so much attention focused on “contamination.” Contamination means that there are items in the recycling load that shouldn’t be there (like garbage or leaves or shoes or hoses . . . you get the picture). It can also mean that otherwise recyclable items are dirty and therefore unusable (oily pizza boxes for example).

Meanwhile, our society has continued to progress towards more packaging, more disposables, and more single-use items.

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There’s a lot of recycled material being processed every day in Salt Lake City! Help us minimize contamination by only putting accepted items into your blue container.

Globally, we produce upward of 448 million tons of plastic each year, 40% of which is destined only to be used one time. What?!?!

But if we threw those plastic plates or cups in the recycling, that was okay, right? Throwing something in the recycling bin became the equivalent of not even using it in the first place! 

But now China has effectively stopped accepting the world’s recycling and the U.S. is left with a lot of material and a system that isn’t designed to deal with newer, stricter materials standards.

Municipalities across the country are grappling with what to do. Some have had to drastically amend their recycling programs or cancel them. (See also “What the Chinese import policies mean for all 50 states”)

In Salt Lake City, disruption of our recycling program has so far been minimal.

Read more

Recycle Snapshot: Styrofoam

styrofoam

Status:
Blue Bin

Interested in:
Chinese take-out

Likes:
Shipping, boxes, cold beverages

About:
I’m originally from Polysterene, but I’ve basically made my way around the entire world by now.

I can be super useful for everything, but then again, you’ll find it hard to get rid of me when you’ve had enough.

If you pitch me to the landfill, I can sit there and throw a fuss for over one million years (seriously!) But if you live in Salt Lake City, throw me in your curbside blue bin and I just might grow up to be some shiny, new plastic container.

Or better yet, a picture frame!