Recycling Essay

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Recycling During the early 1970s, as communities across the United States saw their landfills filling up, attention turned to alternative methods of garbage disposal, such as incineration and recycling. While incineration proved to be a thorny issue due to its toxic ash byproduct, recycling was embraced by Americans as an effective way to offset rising garbage production rates. Today, demand for recycled products is beginning to match supply, and the percentage of waste going into landfills and incinerators is decreasing steadily. In 1970, when Americans produced 121 million tons of municipal solid waste (MSW), three-quarters went directly into landfills, one-fifth was incinerated, and less…show more content…
Many if not most of the products we use on a daily basis are made of recyclable materials, including glass, aluminum, paper, steel, plastic, scrap tires and used oil. And the demand for goods made from recycled products, despite a lot of ups and downs during the 1980s, has never been higher thanks to a combination of well-conceived industrial/commercial applications and much needed government purchasing mandates. Indeed, the existence of markets for recyclables has contributed significantly to recycling's success as a waste disposal alternative. What makes recycling especially unique is its implementation by local people for local people. In regards to MSW management, the federal government is relatively hands-off, and state governments have focused more of their attention on landfill and incineration options. As a result, local communities have come together to initiate recycling efforts; the percolation of their enthusiasm has led to the widespread acceptance and even encouragement of recycling at both the state and federal levels. With recovered materials demanding higher market prices and curbside collection and commercial recovery on the rise, it is not unrealistic for Americans to expect to see nationwide recycling rates of thirty-five to fifty percent by the turn of

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