Vast wastelands. Gray skies. Brown rivers. Mountains of garbage. Few trees. Is this the kind of world you would like your great grandchildren to be forced to live in? They might have to if we don't start to cut down on frivolous waste and take recycling seriously. In order for our world to continue to thrive, recycling needs to become more prominent in public places.
75% of solid waste is recyclable but only a mere 30% of it is actually recycled. 70% of that solid waste is either tossed in a trash can or even worse, littered. That garbage builds up mountains of trash and has numerous negative effects on the environment. In 2004, 55 billion cans were thrown away. Can are one of the easiest things to recycle so those 55 billion wasted cans beg the question, "Why aren't people recycling?"
I believe that most people who don't recycle shy away from recycling because it isn't always convenient and/or the recycling facilities are simply not present. If businesses and companies made recycling more convenient then I have a good feeling that there would be less extraneous waste and more items recycled. Public recycling is key in the mission to cut down on excessive trash.
The Environmental Protection Agency, also known as the EPA, has recently implemented a program that encourages public recycling. This program is entitled "Recycling on the Go." The EPA motivates companies to recycle in public places such as parks, stadiums, convention centers, airports and shopping centers. Some of their major successes have been putting recycling in Yellowstone National Park, the San Diego International Airport, the National Cherry Blossom Festival and the Delaware State Fair. Those successes have proven that when given a chance to recycle without much effort, people choose to recycle.
I'm not saying that if we put out recycling in every public place everyone will recycle nor am I stating that public recycling is a quick fix. It will take years and a lot of effort to cut down on waste but the results will be worth it. Blue skies. Colorful trees. Clear rivers. Your great grandchildren playing happily outside. Why not make an effort to recycle?
Want to start helping today? Recycle at your home, encourage your friends to recycle or try to implement a recycling program at your workplace. Don't forget every little thing helps!