There would always be a debate when it comes to the option of purchasing of recyclables or disposable product. Usually the disposables are a lot cheaper than the recyclables. So people think that the purchase of disposables would be more economical. The merits and demerits of recyclables and disposables are being discussed in this paper.

What is recycling?

Recycling basically means reprocessing of the product for decreasing the further utilisation of new resources. Recycling is a main component of modern waste reduction and is the third component of the "Reduce, Reuse and Recycle" which is the waste hierarchy.

Economic Recycling Facts and Benefits

Information supplied by: National Recycling Coalition

  • Recycling programs that are well-run cost less to operate than waste collection, land filling, and incineration.
  • The more people recycle, the cheaper it gets. Two years after calling recycling a $40 million drain on the city, leaders of New York City realized that a redesigned and efficient recycling system could actually save the city $20 million and they have now signed a 20-year recycling contract.
  • Public sector investment in local recycling programs pays great dividends by creating private sector jobs. For every job of collecting recyclables, there are 26 jobs in processing the materials and manufacturing them into new products.

Environmental Recycling Facts and Benefits

Information supplied by: National Recycling Coalition

  • Almost 70 million tons of material was diverted away from landfills and incinerators in 2000, up from 34 million tons in 1990 by recycling and composting doubling in just 10 years..
  • 17 trees are saved by recycling every ton of paper.
  • The energy that we save when we recycle one glass bottle is enough to light a light bulb for four hours.
  • Recycling is also beneficial to the air and water as it creates a net reduction in ten major categories of air pollutants and eight major categories of water pollutants.
  • It is important to reduce our reliance on foreign oil. Recycling helps us to do that by saving energy.
  • Manufacturing with recycled materials and with very few exceptions, saves energy and water and produces less air and water pollution than manufacturing with virgin materials