Hamilton Consumer: - Recycling Tips For Canadians

(NC)-Canadians have a good track record for recycling at home with curbside pick-up and deposit-return programs in place across the country. But most of us are unfamiliar with how recycling works and how we can take our good recycling habits on the road.

Paul Edney, Director of Inspire Community and co-author of best-selling book, Change the World for 10 Bucks says, "Canadians are doing a great job at home making sure recyclable materials don't end up in their garbage cans. But, there are a few extra tricks we can all learn to make sure each item we recycle has the greatest impact."

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Edney recently created an online recycling tool and resource, supported by the Aquafina brand, www.aquafinatracker.ca, which provides important tips for Canadians to boost their recycling savvy and make the most of their efforts:

  • Recycling works. It takes 70% less energy to create a new bottle from recycled plastic than from raw materials.
  • Take the cap off. It takes over 100 times more energy to crush a plastic bottle with the cap on.
  • Crush it. You can fit five times as many plastic bottles in a truck if they are crushed.

Canadians also face the challenge of taking their good recycling habits on the road with them with limited access to recycling bins in public places. "Recycling bins are not always close by when we need them, but we need to consider alternatives, like keeping a bag or bin in our car, so we can avoid throwing recyclables in the trash."

According to Edney, recycling awareness and education is critical to success. "If we all understood the impact of recycling one plastic bottle, we'd probably be a lot better at making sure more of them stay out of the waste stream."

Spotlight on PET plastic: What is it?

  • PET is very light and strong and requires only a small amount of packaging material to be used.
  • PET plastic is 100 per cent recyclable and is the most popular material used in single-use disposable bottled beverages, indicated with the number "1" as its recycling symbol.
  • PET beverage containers are recycled in single-family homes in provinces like Ontario at average rates of around 70 per cent and closer to 90 per cent in some large urban areas
  • Recycled PET containers are turned into consumer products such as fleece jackets, vests and carpeting.

Source: Refreshments Canada

- News Canada

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