Recycling is not a magic cure for environmental problems, but it is a significant part of the solution. For example, nearly 1 billion trees worth of cardboard waste is produced in the US alone yearly. Of course, the cardboard recycling process is not perfect, but it is a better choice than just throwing it away. Cardboard is a paper product created from wood fibers through a pulping process. Cardboard materials are perfect for recycling. Our experts offer the following reasons you should participate in cardboard recycling in New Jersey.
Cardboard recycling produces strong fibers of paper that can be recycled multiple times and made into cardboard again. Recycling cardboard lowers the number of trees being cut down to create cardboard from raw materials. We can save 17 trees from recycling one ton of cardboard.
Making cardboard from recycled products is a shorter and less complicated process than producing it from raw materials. However, we waste more resources and energy making cardboard from wood. Cardboard recycling saves energy and electricity.
When producing cardboard from raw materials, wood has to be converted to a pulp, creating sulfur dioxide that causes acid rain. We can reduce sulfur dioxide pollution by 50% by recycling cardboard instead of producing it from wood.
Cardboard recycling allows materials to be reused instead of being tossed in a landfill. Landfills pollute air and water, making them environmentally toxic. We can save 9 cubic yards of landfill space by recycling one ton of cardboard.
Methane is released into the air when the cardboard is sent to landfills to break down. This release contributes to global warming because methane absorbs the sun's heat and raises the temperature of the atmosphere.
It requires a massive amount of water to produce cardboard from wood. However, because recycled cardboard has already gone through, the production process can save nearly 7,000 tons of water for each ton of recycled cardboard.
Cardboard recycling is not a perfect process. The recycling process can use toxic chemicals. However, poisonous chemical effects can be eliminated when recycling is done correctly. The problem remains that irresponsible recycling facilities could use more toxic compounds over environmentally friendly compounds. If these compounds are disposed of improperly into the water, the polluted wastewater can seriously affect our ecosystems. However, this still isn't a great argument against the recycling process because producing cardboard from wood requires more dangerous chemicals.
Once cardboard has been contaminated, it is unable to be recycled. If cardboard has plastic envelopes, tape, food residue, or oils, it will likely be sent to the landfill. Contaminated materials can jam recycling machines and are expensive to sort. You can remove clean pieces of cardboard for recycling. If you notice your cardboard is contaminated, the soiled section should be placed in the trash because its life cycle has ended.
Cardboard and paper can easily absorb chemicals. Therefore, when put through the recycling process, they often contain bleach, ink, and other chemicals from their original usage. These materials are made into pulp and bleach, adhesives, and ink are passed on to the recycled cardboard materials during the recycling process. Because these chemicals remain in the recycled part cardboard, they can be dangerous if ingested. This means you cannot use recycled cardboard to make food containers because they could be contaminated with hazardous chemicals. These hazardous chemicals can transfer into food if takeout is placed into recycled containers.