Mon November 4, 2013
Earth Calendar for November 4th and November 5th
A recent report from The Container Recycling Institute on container recycling rates and trends in the United States, shows that based on more than two dozen data sources, from the beverage market to U.S. census tables, sales of disposable beverage containers have grown dramatically. Yet even as beverage sales increased, the rate at which we recycled the empty containers declined.
Of the 243 billion beverage packages sold in the U.S. in 2010—glass bottles, plastic bottles and aluminum cans as well as foil pouches and other nontraditional containers—153 billion were either landfilled, littered or incinerated. This put the national wasting rate for 2010 at 63 percent. In other words, Americans have persisted in wasting more beverage containers than they’ve recycled. The report suggests numerous reasons for this imbalance, among them the surge in bottled water sales and sales of beverages consumed away from home. Our failure to recycle nearly two out of every three containers has monumental environmental impacts. Every beverage container that is not recycled must instead be replaced with a new container made from raw materials. Extracting and processing these materials requires far more energy and generates more pollutants than making containers from recycled feedstock. For example, if the 153 billion containers wasted in 2010 had been diverted back to the manufacturing stream, the U.S. could have saved the equivalent of 203 trillion BTUs of energy— enough to power nearly all the homes in the cities of Los Angeles and Chicago combined. For more information on recycling efforts, visit the website.
On Our Calendar: Spend a morning looking for fall migrating birds at Cincinnati Nature Center’s Rowe Woods. All birders are welcome, just bring your binoculars and dress to be outdoors. Rowe Woods walks meet in the regular parking area. Saturday, November 9th, 8:00 am. More information at the website.