Green or alternative energy sources are viable for greening our lifestyles
I just want to commend your organisation for the service you are offering and to let you know that myself and other households on our street in Constantia Park are 100% behind the initiative. I am a confirmed ‘ Greenie’ and your service is saving me a long drive every month to drop off my recycling. It is high time that South Africans develop a conscience regarding waste and the detrimental effects on the environment. Stephanie Kruger
Recycling non-biodegradable goods such as plastic is important for the environment, or so they say.
It’s no secret that going out of ones way to recycle plastics is an inconvenience.The question remains: is the inconvenience worth it?
Plastic recycling is a process whereby plastics are separated by colour and resin type after which they are ground or shredded into small flakes. The flakes are washed and decontaminated, further sorted and dried. Once this is done the flakes are melted and made into pellets which can be used in the making of plastic products. Products made from recycled plastics are not of the same quality as products made from pure plastics and for this reason recycled plastics are ususally not used for food or drink containers.
Recycled plastics are used to make different materials based on their resin type. Some examples of goods made from recycled plastics include packaging containers, construction products (damp proof membranes, drainage pipes, ducting and flooring), landscaping products (walkways, jetties, pontoons, bridges, fences and signs), textile fibre or clothing, street and garden furniture and plastic bags.
In Roodepoort people can separate the plastics in their garbage and drop them off at the following Municipal drop-off sites: Jim Fouche Road, Panorama
The National Botanical Gardens, c/o Ruimsig and Malcom Road
Kruin Park Retirement Village, Umgeni Road
Another alternative is to allow informal recyclers to collect your recycling and take it to a buy-back centre. These people can earn between R20 and R150 a day from collecting recycling, which may be their primary source of income. It would be very helpful, more hygienic and cleanly if residents could separate plastics from their garbage to avoid informal recyclers from digging in bins to collect them. You could easily do this by keeping a separate bin for your plastics and leaving it out on your pavement every week.
It is indeed true that recycling plastic is better for the planet as a whole. Socially, it creates jobs and reduces landfills, which are eyesores, and increases the standard of living. Economically, recycling conserves resources and energy. Environmentally, pollution is reduced, greenhouse-gas emissions are reduced and steps to create a sustainable environment are taken.
Despite this there are some costs incurred that cannot be ignored. Recycling is inconvenient for consumers who have to sort through plastics and make special effort to dispose of plastics through recycling plants instead of throwing them away in the garbage. Recycling can also be expensive and unsafe for those working in the industry.
Looking at the bigger picture it can be said that the advantages of recycling your plastics outweigh the disadvantages. For the inconvenience of separating and transporting plastic are benefits of recycling on the planet and those around us. Plastic recycling is definitely worth the trouble.