I hang my head in shame and admit that I have only recently got off my backside and started recycling the skip loads of rubbish that seem to pour out of our house every week. I put it down to sheer and inexcusable laziness that it’s taken me so long to get my act together, which I know, considering the state of the environment, is no excuse whatsoever.
To make matters worse, being the mother of two poo producing offspring , I probably also have a landfill somewhere, piled to the hilt with Huggies and with my name on it. I did toy, very fleetingly I must admit, with the idea of wash and wear nappies, but I admit I didn’t really fancy being elbow deep in yesterdays dinner every morning.
Anyway that aside, here I am merrily getting into the swing of it all, sorting through plastic packaging and cardboard, washing out tins and even setting up a compost bin (I drew the line at a worm farm, as good as worm poo maybe for my roses) and I find that the whole process is starting to become strangely additive and somewhat soothing. I do of course acknowledge that the point of recycling is aimed at keeping earth on an even keel and not in bringing me light entertainment, but there you go, who needs shopping and Diary milk when you can clear out and compost 90% of your house’s content instead.
So now I find myself actively hunting out things to recycle. Barbies with one leg and headless Polly Pocket’s, scraps of paper with potentially important numbers on them and last term’s collection of fine art crayon masterpieces – out they all go. Actually maybe there’s the clue. I enjoy it because I suddenly have a legitimate reason for throwing out all those things that end up in the bowl on the kitchen dresser. The bowl full of obscure things waiting to be re-housed, re-used or re-glued.
Of course the question of how 2 adults, 2 children and a dog actually manage to produce as much rubbish as we do in a week is still a mystery to me, if I didn’t know better I’d say the contents of our rubbish bin mutate overnight.
I’m not sure what has brought about this new environmentally friendly me. Maybe it’s because we now live in a city where there is no ozone layer above us, always a concern when you cook like a sausage in 15 minutes or less. Maybe it’s because the older I get, the more I worry about my children’s future. Or maybe it’s just because it seemed a tad ridiculous that we were getting through an entire roll of bin liners every week. Who knows. At the end of day my reasons are irrelevant, as long as I am doing something to make a difference, even if it is only one tree at a time, that’s all that really matters.
* 1 recycled tin can would save enough energy to power a television for 3 hours.
* A tin can that is thrown away will still be a can 500 years from now.
* A can that is recycled, can be part of a new can within six weeks.
* Glass is 100% recyclable and can be used again and again.
* Glass that is thrown away and ends up in landfills will never decompose.
* A recycled glass bottle would save enough energy to power a computer for 25 minutes.
* 1 recycled plastic bottle would save enough energy to power a 60-watt light bulb for 3 hours.
* 70% less energy is required to recycle paper compared with making it from raw materials.
* Up to 60% of the rubbish that ends up in the dustbin could be recycled.
* The unreleased energy in the average dustbin each year could power a tv for 5,000 hours.
* As much as 50% of waste in the average dustbin could be composted.
* Every week about 20 species of plants and animals become extinct.
* Rainforests are being cut down at the rate of 100 acres per minute.
* Plastic based rubbish in the ocean kill as many as 1,000,000 sea creatures every year.