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rashore

Is This the End of Recycling?

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rashore
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After decades of earnest public-information campaigns, Americans are finally recycling. Airports, malls, schools, and office buildings across the country have bins for plastic bottles and aluminum cans and newspapers. In some cities, you can be fined if inspectors discover that you haven’t recycled appropriately.

But now much of that carefully sorted recycling is ending up in the trash.

For decades, we were sending the bulk of our recycling to China—tons and tons of it, sent over on ships to be made into goods such as shoes and bags and new plastic products. But in 2018, the country restricted imports of certain recyclables, including mixed paper—magazines, office paper, junk mail—and most plastics. Waste-management companies across the country are telling towns, cities, and counties that there is no longer a market for their recycling. These municipalities have two choices: pay much higher rates to get rid of recycling, or throw it all away.

https://getpocket.com/explore/item/is-this-the-end-of-recycling?utm_source=pocket-newtab

 

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sci-nerd

 

I wonder what they'll spend all the money they saved on, when the world collapses... :innocent:

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Desertrat56

I am thinking of finding a way to melt down the plastic and make it into art or something I can sell, if it works I can go around and pick through people's recycle bins for the material.   The hardest part I am thinking, is containing the fumes.  Probably would need a  huge filter system, then some way to dispose of the waste created.

There was a company in the 80's that invented a more efficient extruder specifically for recycling a certain type of plastic, I think at first they only wanted the green 2 liter soda bottles.  They made office supplies out of it.

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Robotic Jew

I saw a local news story a few weeks ago detailing the city's recycling process and how something like 90% of things placed in the "Recycle bins" just went to the regular landfill due to expenses associated with separating the materials. 

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Desertrat56
55 minutes ago, Robotic Jew said:

I saw a local news story a few weeks ago detailing the city's recycling process and how something like 90% of things placed in the "Recycle bins" just went to the regular landfill due to expenses associated with separating the materials. 

If they bothered to start a recycling system they should have set a plan for sorting plastics as part of that.  Most cities do and there is a company callled Waste Management all over the country that does just that, started out in some huge east coast city recycling everything.  They operate in my area but the city has their own processing.  They have sorters and less from the recycling bins goes to the landfill.  It isn't perfect, but it is a good attempt. 

At one time Waste Management even had worm beds for the biological waste and then sold the dirt created from the worms as fertilizer.  I haven't seen it in a while.  They re-used one gallon milk jugs as containers for it.

P.S.  There are so many things we as individuals can do to keep stuff out of the landfills too. We can't just sit around waiting for someone else to solve problems, we have to help and be part of the solution.

Edited by Desertrat56
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Tatetopa

It was so easy and out of sight when we could just ship it to China or Malaysia.  Now we have to deal with it.

I've seen a couple of recent articles about using plastic as an additive to asphalt paving that seems to be testing out pretty well.

https://www.fastcompany.com/90420730/los-angeles-is-testing-plastic-asphalt-that-makes-it-possible-to-recycle-roads

I don't think we build enough roads to keep up with the flow though.  Eventually we are going to have to change some of our habits.  That is happening too.   Amazon has become such a marketing and distribution force that businesses are looking at packaging their products in boxes that do not need to go inside another Amazon box.  It saves money.  In business at least money is a more reliable driver for action than good intentions.

https://salazarpackaging.com/creating-shippable-primary-packaging-for-amazon-and-other-fulfillment-and-contract-packaging-operations/

 

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Desertrat56
1 minute ago, Tatetopa said:

It was so easy and out of sight when we could just ship it to China or Malaysia.  Now we have to deal with it.

I've seen a couple of recent articles about using plastic as an additive to asphalt paving that seems to be testing out pretty well.

https://www.fastcompany.com/90420730/los-angeles-is-testing-plastic-asphalt-that-makes-it-possible-to-recycle-roads

I don't think we build enough roads to keep up with the flow though.  Eventually we are going to have to change some of our habits.  That is happening too.   Amazon has become such a marketing and distribution force that businesses are looking at packaging their products in boxes that do not need to go inside another Amazon box.  It saves money.  In business at least money is a more reliable driver for action than good intentions.

https://salazarpackaging.com/creating-shippable-primary-packaging-for-amazon-and-other-fulfillment-and-contract-packaging-operations/

 

The first easiest habit is to not buy anything in plastic bottles if aluminum or glass are available.  A next step is taking your own containers and buying lunchmeat and cheese from the deli instead of getting the plastic wrapped or containered lunchmeat and cheese.   Use re-fillable soap bottles and re-use any plastic you bring home if you can, like straws and plastic drink cups.  The containers cottage cheese comes in.  We don't need to buy rubbermaid or those other semi-reusable plastic containers, we can re-use the ones we buy food in.  Compost your scraps (except meat).  Many other things that can make a big difference if more people start doing them.

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Piney
1 hour ago, Robotic Jew said:

I saw a local news story a few weeks ago detailing the city's recycling process and how something like 90% of things placed in the "Recycle bins" just went to the regular landfill due to expenses associated with separating the materials. 

New Jersey municipalities have been getting caught throwing their recyclables in the landfills for over a decade and will continue getting caught. 

26 minutes ago, Desertrat56 said:

The first easiest habit is to not buy anything in plastic bottles if aluminum or glass are available.  A next step is taking your own containers and buying lunchmeat and cheese from the deli instead of getting the plastic wrapped or containered lunchmeat and cheese.   Use re-fillable soap bottles and re-use any plastic you bring home if you can, like straws and plastic drink cups.  The containers cottage cheese comes in.  We don't need to buy rubbermaid or those other semi-reusable plastic containers, we can re-use the ones we buy food in.  Compost your scraps (except meat).  Many other things that can make a big difference if more people start doing them.

We've discussed our personal anti-plastic policies before. But I haven't been able to get other people to listen since I was a teen. They want convenience.

 

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aztek

and what is wrong with wanting convenience?  it is not those people who throw recyclables in landfills,  they separate them and use recycle bins, waste management companies govt do the dirty work.  

3 rd world agrees to buy our recyclables, yet we sent it to them mixed with trash. vast majority of ocean trash comes from those countries,   but it is not even the biggest problem,  plastic recycle isn't  profitable, it is mandated by some gvmnt,  and waste mgmt companies lose money on it. 

Quote

This shouldn't be a surprise: Overall, worldwide, most of the plastic trash in the ocean comes from Asia. In fact, the top six countries for ocean garbage are China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Sri Lanka and Thailand, according to a 2015 study in the journal Science

Quote

90% of plastic polluting our oceans comes from just 10 rivers

Quote

Eight of them are in Asia: the Yangtze; Indus; Yellow; Hai He; Ganges; Pearl; Amur; Mekong; and two in Africa – the Nile and the Niger.

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2018/06/90-of-plastic-polluting-our-oceans-comes-from-just-10-rivers/

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aztek

i think by now we could replace plastic bottles with paper, like oj , and milk boxes,   people will always want, and pay for convenience, but plastic isn't the only solution. especially since we have plenty of experience with packaging and disposable paper. i do agree oceans of plastic isn't a good thing. 

if we spend so much money\effort on cleaning up oceans\rivers, as we do to promote climate change agenda we'd live in a clean world

Edited by aztek
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Desertrat56
31 minutes ago, Piney said:

New Jersey municipalities have been getting caught throwing their recyclables in the landfills for over a decade and will continue getting caught. 

We've discussed our personal anti-plastic policies before. But I haven't been able to get other people to listen since I was a teen. They want convenience.

 

Yes, I have the same problem.  I feel like I failed my daughters because they are really resistant.  So, the best I can do is what I personally can do.

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Desertrat56
4 minutes ago, aztek said:

i think by now we could replace plastic bottles with paper, like oj , and milk boxes,   people will always want, and pay for convenience, but plastic isn't the only solution. especially since we have plenty of experience with packaging and disposable paper. i do agree oceans of plastic isn't a good thing. 

if we spend so much money\effort on cleaning up oceans\rivers, as we do to promote climate change agenda we'd live in a clean world

There is a company making boxed water, I think it is called "Boxed Water is Better" or something like that.  I have bought it before but I have only found it in one store.  I don't usually buy water, I keep reusable water bottles and fill them up to take with me where ever I go.

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aztek

i tell my kids plastic leaches poisons, that is why we have so much cancer, especially when food or drink is hot.   people get things much sooner when it affects them personally, when it is about "greater good" people don't pay much attention. 

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Doug1029
3 hours ago, Desertrat56 said:

I am thinking of finding a way to melt down the plastic and make it into art or something I can sell, if it works I can go around and pick through people's recycle bins for the material.   The hardest part I am thinking, is containing the fumes.  Probably would need a  huge filter system, then some way to dispose of the waste created.

There was a company in the 80's that invented a more efficient extruder specifically for recycling a certain type of plastic, I think at first they only wanted the green 2 liter soda bottles.  They made office supplies out of it.

I have seen lawn chairs made from recycled plastic.

We still have paper plants that use recycled paper.  Recycled stuff is cheaper than making new fiber, so if it's the right kind of paper, they'll take it.

I have to wonder about some types of recycling.  When it costs more to recycle than to make a new product, what advantage is there to be gained by recycling?  We can sequester carbon by just burying it in the ground in dry landfills where it won't decompose.  So why not bury it, if that's the cheapest way to get rid of it?

Doug

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Desertrat56
9 minutes ago, Doug1029 said:

I have seen lawn chairs made from recycled plastic.

We still have paper plants that use recycled paper.  Recycled stuff is cheaper than making new fiber, so if it's the right kind of paper, they'll take it.

I have to wonder about some types of recycling.  When it costs more to recycle than to make a new product, what advantage is there to be gained by recycling?  We can sequester carbon by just burying it in the ground in dry landfills where it won't decompose.  So why not bury it, if that's the cheapest way to get rid of it?

Doug

If we need to do that maybe we need to quit using that material

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Doug1029
4 minutes ago, Desertrat56 said:

If we need to do that maybe we need to quit using that material

We probably need to eliminate, or at least sharply reduce our use of plastics.  The by-product of plastic is diesel.  Once we go electric, what are we going to do with all that diesel?

Paper can be recycled, or buried, whichever is cheaper.

Doug

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aztek

i had a hat made from recycled plastic bottles,  it looked and felt no different than any other polyester hat. i paid 40 bucks for it, while regular hat would be 1\2, but i didn't buy it for the material, it was a cool design,  so it is possible to make something out it, but again it is not profitable.or else we'd see much more of it. if it was not for govt mandate\subsidies we'd never see anything made from recycled plastic, paper and metal are different. 

once you get plastic sorted shredded, than it does save money, and could be profitable, but the whole sorting, separating is what cost too much, not all plastics are the same , you can't mix them if you melt them, or add to granules. 

Edited by aztek

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Desertrat56
8 minutes ago, Doug1029 said:

We probably need to eliminate, or at least sharply reduce our use of plastics.  The by-product of plastic is diesel.  Once we go electric, what are we going to do with all that diesel?

Paper can be recycled, or buried, whichever is cheaper.

Doug

Paper and cardboard could also be made in to logs to burn.

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Doug1029
11 minutes ago, Desertrat56 said:

Paper and cardboard could also be made in to logs to burn.

Burning adds carbon to the air, defeating the purpose of recycling.

Doug

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Doug1029
27 minutes ago, Desertrat56 said:

If we need to do that maybe we need to quit using that material

You can use plastic shreds rather than sand in sand blasting.  Produces a softer edge.

Doug

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aztek

lamo diesel is absolutely NOT a byproduct of plastic, it is  one of several components we get from refining oil,  plastic is made from oil as well, but it has nothing to do with diesel,  

this is taught in middle school, and this guy claims he has 4 degrees including phd, i don't believe it for a second, 

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spartan max2

What's truly ironic to me is that as human we create one the most durable materials in history - plastic. And then we use it as the most expendable thing lol.

Plastic water bottles, packaging, etc.

Edited by spartan max2
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'Walt' E. Kurtz

Send it out in space some aliens prolly find it :-D  Would be fun to watch that rocket explode before it leaves our atmosphere. 

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travelnjones

Was at the Portland arena for Iron Maiden and Trans Siberian Orchestra.  Every time I went to a trash/recycle bin there was a row of confused people looking at the multiple options that mainly got mad and ended up using the waste for everything.

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Dark_Grey

Once again a select few are lining their pockets by scaring the general public in to submission.

Are their any provable solutions to reducing "emissions" that haven't been cooked up in a shareholder's boardroom? I suspect there isn't much more Western nations can do, other than going fully nuclear. The fate of the environment now rests in the hands of people who will never prioritize it.

 

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