12 December 2013
12 December 2013,

There’s a green recycling revolution underway.  Staff at Yellowstone are starting to toss soda cups and plastic utensils into heaters to melt the waste away. There’s a restaurant in Atlanta that tosses scraps from plates into a bucket that goes into a compost pile in the back. Even major corporations are starting to get into the swing of green recycling. Honda recycles waste to the point of getting rid of their dumpsters entirely.

Businesses are starting to adopt what’s called an anti-garbage strategy or zero waste. The idea is catching on throughout the country in cafeterias, stadiums, companies and restaurants.

The concept is simple:  produce less waste and recycle whatever you can. Use biodegradable products. With more landfills being stretched to capacity and an increased awareness of how decaying trash harms our environment, the time for green recycling has arrived.

Recycling centers are becoming more popular with the idea that landfills take up valuable property and the cost to ship to landfills becomes more cumbersome. The residents of Nantucket offer a great example of the future where there’s a mandate to recycle not only metal, glass and paper, but also tires, appliances and batteries. Many of the residents have adopted a recycling mentality and the percentage of waste now going to a landfill has dropped to only about eight percent whereas residents of Massachusetts send an average of sixty six percent of their trash to a landfill.

Two things need to happen to help communities move toward a zero waste goal. First, residents need to be motivated to sort out their waste appropriately. Second, the community needs to have the proper infrastructure to handle recycling what’s thrown out. This is where the EPA can provide some direction, but it still comes down to an issue of incentive. That is where the changes will truly take place.

Intonu is the premier green recycling center in the Southeast.

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