Why you should not recycle - Essay Example

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Benefits associated with recycling include but are not limited to a saving in the Earth’s space, reduced requirement of and reliance upon the…
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Why you should not recycle
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Why you should not recycle Recycling has conventionally been identified as a potential measure to save the Earth’s resources as well as environment and nature. Benefits associated with recycling include but are not limited to a saving in the Earth’s space, reduced requirement of and reliance upon the natural resources and improved environment by way of preservation of trees. The paradox reality is that most of the advantages foreseen with recycling are mere assumptions and have little to do with reality.
Let’s begin with the first assumed advantage of recycling; recycling saves landspace. The vastness of landspace is underestimated when it is thought to be saved with recycling as the waste consumes very little of the total landspace. “If all the solid waste for the next thousand years were put into a single space, it would take up 44 miles of landfill, a mere .01% of the U.S. landspace” (Cordato, 1995). This means that the benefit obtained by recycling in terms of the saved landspace is negligible and can be easily overlooked.
Secondly, one of the strongest arguments in favor of recycling that is conventionally raised is that recycling is a method to preserve trees. Since paper is made from trees, it is claimed that recycling paper would reduce the need to cut trees to make paper from. Although the argument seems quite convincing, yet it does not reflect the real phenomenon. Since the supply of a material at a particular point in time is consistent with the demand for it, a reduction in the demand of paper would result in an equivalent reduction in the number of trees. People would care little to plant more trees if there occurs a decline in their need. The validity of this argument can be estimated from the number of trees that are grown with the intention of using them for the making of paper. “In the paper industry, 87% of the trees used are planted to produce paper. For every 13 trees "saved" by recycling, 87 will never get planted” (Cordato, 1995). Thus recycling has an overall negative effect on the growth of trees. “Promoting recycling may therefore not simply be pointless but actually damaging” (FOPAP, 2012).
Thirdly, recycling hardly does anything to reduce pollution. There is no noticeable difference between the extent of chemicals released in the environment in the process of manufacturing things and those that are released in recycling things. Recycling involves a lot of chemical processing of the used material, which has an equivalent impact on the environment. Recycling also causes a decline in the quality of products. “When plastics other than those found in soda and water bottles are recycled, they are mixed with different plastics to produce a hybrid of lower quality, which is then molded into something amorphous and cheap” (Cun, 2011).
Concluding, recycling is frequently referred to as a way of living green. In-depth analysis of the benefits associated with recycling are not realistic and are often over-rated. It is safe not to recycle things. It is, indeed, safer not to recycle as fresh products are lesser dangerous to health and higher in quality than the recycled material.
Cordato, R. E. (1995). Dont Recycle: Throw It Away! The Free Market. 13(12).
Retrieved from
Cun, C. (2011, Feb. 9). Green by Design: What’s Wrong with Recycling. Retrieved from
Friends Of Print And Paper. (2012). Why we should not recycle paper. Retrieved from Read More
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