Global Recycling Day 2020

Guest blog by Emily Shipley, Environmental Communications and Engagement Assistant Graduate Intern.

Using The Seventh Resource (recycled materials) saves over 700 million tonnes in CO2 emissions annually saves over 700 million tonnes in CO2 emissions annually, which is almost as much carbon that the aviation industry produces in passenger transport every year.

Making aluminium cans from recycled materials uses 1/12th of the energy needed to make them from raw materials. This is particularly notable because aluminium can be recycled countless times and it is estimated that around two-thirds of all aluminium that has ever been produced is still in circulation today- don’t break the cycle by throwing yours away!

Although carbon is the punch-word that most media sources use when discussing climate change, it isn’t the only emission that we should be aiming to reduce. Sulphur oxides (SOx) are toxic gases which are known to be harmful to human health, causing respiratory problems and lowered resistance to heart and lung diseases. On top of this, SOx gases in the atmosphere can lead to acid rain which is harmful to crops, forests and also contributes to the acidification of the oceans, which in turn will have consequences for marine organisms that we cannot accurately predict. Making bags from recycled polythene uses only one third of the amount of Sulphur Dioxide than making them from scratch.

Every little thing that you recycle helps us to take steps to becoming a cleaner, greener society.

In the past 50 years, humans have consumed more resources than ever previously before and it is time to take action now to reduce our consumption and help to build a greener planet.

In 2018, the Bureau of International Recycling and the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation recognised Global Recycling Day as an official United Nations day. This year’s Global Recycling Day theme is #RecyclingHeroes and it takes place on 18 March.

It is important that not all messages that we see from environmental initiatives are negative and by recognising the people and places that showcase how recycling can make a positive impact, we are encouraging repeat and copied behaviour.

Today, the Global Recycling Foundation will recognise the top 100 #RecyclingHeroes as nominated by members of the public, a chance for unsung heroes to have their moment. Ten winners chosen from around the world will jointly represent the following regions: North America, Central and South America, Europe, Africa and Australasia and all of these will win a $1,000 prize to contribute to their recycling initiative and have their work showcases to the world.

Check out our A-Z of Waste and Recycling to see how you can do your bit.

Find out more about Global Recycling Day here.

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