How much can we save by recycling? A great deal, according to Earth911, which "broke down 10 common materials and showed you how much energy, water and other natural resources can be saved by recycling them." For instance:
- "...aluminum can be infinitely recycled back into new cans, and...manufacturing cans from recycled aluminum consumes 95 percent less energy than using virgin materials."
- "The energy conserved by tossing just one plastic bottle in the blue bin can light a 60-watt light bulb for six hours or power a computer for 25 minutes, according to the EPA."
- "Recycling just one glass bottle saves enough energy to light a 100-watt light bulb for four hours, power a computer for 30 minutes or a television for 20 minutes, according to the Glass Packaging Institute."
- "...if the 100 million cell phones ready for end-of-life management in 2006 were recycled, we would have saved enough energy to power approximately 194,000 U.S. households for a year."
In sum, as the Environmental Protection Agency explains, recycling reduces pollution, conserves natural resources, saves energy, and "protects and expands US manufacturing jobs and increases US competitiveness." That's a win-win almost any way you look at it.