Whoever said "everything old is new again" wasn’t talking about recycling, but the saying certainly is à propos. For example, today’s newspaper could be on newsprint produced from the newspapers you recycled four or five months ago.
The materials you place in your recycling bin each week do come back to us as new products. Aluminum cans are processed into new cans. Glass containers are turned into new glass.
But there are other products made from recycled materials that bear little or no resemblance to their original components:
You probably wouldn’t blow your nose on a sheet of copier paper, but the fluffy tissues you use when you have a cold could well have been made from recycled office paper. Recycled paper products reduce the need to cut down trees for processing into pulp.
Plastic containers are turned into a wide variety of products – carpeting, fleece and building materials used in place of pressure-treated lumber. New plastic is made from petroleum, so using recycled plastic products reduces our dependency on imported oil.
When you shop, make sure you look for the “recycled” symbol on items you buy. Buying recycled products saves precious natural resources – buying recycled products is good for the environment.