Did you know that paper makes up 40% of our total waste in the United States? Paper consumption and plastic disposal are two major environmental concerns we need to focus on.
As people become more consciously aware of our impact on the planet, they start looking for ways to lead more eco-friendly lives. As a result, we’re seeing more innovative recycled products being produced each day.
Recycled goods aren’t limited to cups and paper, either. You can make everything from shoes and clothes to furniture and more. When you buy these recycled items, you’re also helping our earth.
Learn all the benefits of buying recycled products and become the change we need in our world.
- Preserves Our Resources
When you buy recycled materials, you’re helping to preserve our limited resources. Let’s focus on the paper industry for a moment.
The paper and pulp industry uses more than 40% of the industrial wood traded around the globe. Unfortunately, the U.S. is one of the biggest consumers of paper in the world.
Many of our forests are being cleared to make way for pulp plantations. Not only are these operations unsustainable, but they’re also driving many species towards extinction.
In addition, these operations have led Indonesia to become the third-largest greenhouse gas emitting nation.
By buying recycled materials, or by using “tree-free” paper, you can make a difference.
- Reduces Trash in Our Landfills
According to the EPA, the total amount of municipal solid waste (MSW) averaged out to about 4.51 pounds per person each day. This information comes from 2017, and judging from our trends, the generated trash per person is likely much higher today.
In fact, the U.S. produces more trash than anywhere else in the world.
Packaging, diapers, disposable razors, and tires are just a few products that get thrown away and clog up our landfills.
When you can, buy reusable products to help reduce the amount of trash we’re sending to our landfills.
- Companies Benefit From Recycled Products
Businesses also benefit from going green. Over half of consumers said they would pay more for sustainable and eco-friendly products.
If companies can produce recycled or upcycled goods, they know they’ll have a target market ready to buy. The survey also found that these consumers plan on buying more environmentally friendly products in the future.
It may be as simple for companies as making the switch to recycled to-go containers or eliminating plastic straws. You can also feel good when you support businesses trying to do their part.
- Reduces Water Waste
The pulp and paper industry uses a staggering amount of water in its manufacturing process. In fact, paper mills use around 17,000 gallons of water per ton of paper.
The textile industry is also responsible for a large amount of water waste. Water baths are used when applying dyes, finishing chemicals, and more to fabrics.
In India, the textile industry goes through an estimated 425,000,000 gallons each day. And wasted water is only one concern. Pollution caused by wastewater is another major environmental issue.
While there are ways for paper mills to reduce their water usage, it still benefits you to use recycled paper. Buying clothing made from recycled goods can also help reduce water waste and pollution.
- It Saves Energy
The manufacturing process takes a great deal of energy to put out new products. It’s very labor-intensive to manufacture, refine, and transport new products like aluminum, paper, or plastic.
Plastics, for instance, have to undergo a chemical process to turn gas or oil into a plastic resin. Not only does this take a lot of energy, but it also creates emissions that generate a bigger carbon footprint.
The process of creating plastic packaging or other products creates emissions, and when plastic is burned for electricity, it releases even more greenhouse gasses.
Recycling or repurposing something takes far less energy and uses less of our limited resources. By purchasing recycled products, you’re helping save energy by extending the life of these products rather than buying new ones.
- Creates More Jobs
When you buy recycled products, you’re helping to stimulate the economy by supporting the businesses putting those goods out there.
The textile industry is one of the biggest offenders when it comes to waste. Discarded clothing items make up the bulk of what gets thrown out. However, many of these items still have a use and some are even brand-new.
Many people make or sell “upcycled” clothing to extend the life of a garment. But if you’re not into the boho look, there are other ways to help boost job creation.
One way is to support companies that make eco-friendly clothing items made out of recycled materials. Visit this site to read now about earth-friendly shoes and learn about circular fashion.
- Helps Teach Younger Generations
The changes we make today influence our younger generations. Don’t you want to send a positive message to your kids by showing them that you’re environmentally responsible?
When you buy things made from recycled materials, you’re demonstrating the importance of living green. You’re educating kids on the dangers of relying on unsustainable resources and the importance of reducing our carbon footprint however we can.
Teach kids to recycle and reuse while they’re young, and they’ll pass that message on.
Buy Recycled Materials to Save Our Earth
It’s imperative we all do our part in helping the planet and buying recycled products is one way to do that.
Plus, there are so many cool eco-friendly products out there. You can buy everything from shirts and shoes to notebooks made from recycled materials. Why wouldn’t you start shopping for green products?
If you’re interested in learning more about living an environmentally friendly lifestyle, check out the other sections on our site. We’ll help you discover lifestyle tips to help you live your best life.