Recycle: Why Recyling Makes You A Hero

Do you have any idea how important recycling is?

Honestly, this is a question I want to ask so many people. As someone who is passionate about conserving the environment, I am all about living eco-friendly life. And recycling is one of the basics for me.

The good news is that I’m definitely witnessing a growing enthusiasm for recycling in my community:

  • Recycling among local families, from parents to kids
  • Increased participation in recycling awareness project
  • Promotion of recycling in schools

But it’s not enough yet.

Why Recycle?

If you’re one of those people asking, ‘What’s the point?’, let me share some of the benefits of recycling with you.

Fighting Global Warming and Climate Change

Despite what many politicians say, I firmly believe that climate change and global warming IS real. We’re all messing up mother earth’s natural climate patterns and so on by abusing our precious environment.

By recycling, however, you are doing your part to combat climate change and global warming. 

But how can recycling achieve this, you might wonder?

Some of the relevant benefits of recycling include reducing forestation, saving energy, minimising greenhouse gas emissions from landfills, and encouraging the production of more energy efficient products.

Avoiding the Contamination of Nature

Chances are, you’ve come across waste in a park or on a beach. I’d like to think that it bothered you to see it?

On a bigger scale, the excess of garbage being dumped into the ocean is a severe threat to sea life. Sea animals like fish and sea turtles consume garbage or get strangled in it and then end up dying long painful deaths.

Sea turtle entangled in rubbish. Photo: Greenpeacw

By recycling, you’re channelling rubbish away from places like oceans, public spaces, dumping grounds, and sewage systems.

Instead, the recycled waste gets reused in purposeful ways or disposed in safer, more eco-friendly ways.

Helping with Job Creation

Are you aware that around a hundred thousand jobs are available yearly in the recycling industry of South Africa? 

If that doesn’t give you hope for the country’s unemployment crisis, I don’t know what will.

A good example of a successful recycling company making a difference in the job market is Mpact Recycling.

Mpact Recycling is South Africa’s leading paper and plastics recycler.  The company partners with local entrepreneurs to get them to help collect recycled paper, thereby empowering less-fortunate entrepreneurs.

These entrepreneurs also employ people under them, increasing the amount of South Africans who live happy, sustainable lives.

Mpact Recycling.

What can be Recycled?

Here’s a quick list of the DOs and DON’Ts of recycling:

DO recycle:

  • Plastic bottles
  • Ice cream containers
  • Paper
  • Cereal/snack cardboard boxes
  • Phonebooks, magazines, newspapers
  • Metals: Tin, aluminium and steel cans
  • Glass bottles
  • Jars
  • Foil and foil packaging
  • Rechargeable batteries

DON’T recycle:

  • Milk and fruit juice cartons (because they’re lined with aluminium inside)
  • Polystyrene foam cups or containers
  • Plastic straws (here’s why: Why plastic straws are not recyclable)
  • Broken or sharp glass
  • Light bulbs
  • Disposable batteries
  • Ceramics (plates, etc.)
  • Soiled food containers, like pizza boxes

Quick tip: Since dirty food and drink containers can’t be recycled, clean them before recycling them. Just rinse out your cooldrink bottles before recycling it, for example.

I encourage you to recycle on a daily basis. Make it a lifestyle, and you’ll be an environmental hero of note.


If you’d like to do more than just recycling, read this article of mine for tips on reducing pollution: Saving Mother Earth: Easy Ways to Reduce Pollution

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