Recycling and waste management services can collect recyclable materials from your home or business, but what happens to them after that? How do these materials end up where they need to go so they can be processed, broken down, and made available for reuse in the manufacturing of new products? The answer depends upon what is being recycled. It all starts at the collection point, whether this is your home or a commercial facility.
- In Colorado, different recyclables go to different areas. Some are even transported out of state for high-tech processing that focuses on sustainability and getting the most usable content out of recyclable items.
- Paper is highly recyclable, and it is becoming more and more common to recover this material and reuse it. Paper is often sent to Arizona for making newspaper, or it may go into the Pacific Northwest where it can be manufactured into cereal boxes. Paper recyclables are carefully processed and separated from contaminants, and it is then returned to a pulp form ready to be used in the manufacturing of new paper.
- Plastic bottles containing soda and water go to South Carolina, where recycling is a large industry that encompasses more than 450 companies. It has a large economic impact on the region, making the recycling of plastic bottles beneficial in many different ways.
- Most recycled glass in Colorado remains in the state, often used to make beer bottles. Every ton of glass that is recycled is able to replace an equivalent weight of raw materials in new glass manufacturing. A quality glass recycling facility can process up to 20 tons of glass per hour.
- The recycling of metal and scrap metal saves a vast amount of energy and raw materials. For example, one ton recycled steel conserves 2,500 pounds of iron ore, 1,400 pounds of coal, and 120 pounds of limestone. Recovered metals returned the manufacturing process, to form automobiles, appliances, or to be exported to other countries.
This is just an example of where some of the most commonly recycled materials go and how they are processed. To learn more about recycling, trash collection, and sustainability, contact Western Disposal at (303) 586-1100. You can also visit our website to explore our full range of waste management services.