A carpet made of beverage containers? Does not sound very comfortable…

Many people recycle but few know what actually happens with their recycling after they have dropped it off or the recycling truck has taken it away. There are actually a lot of cool items that are made from your recycling – you may even be wearing it, sitting on it or even driving on it!

Plastic for instance, is a valuable commodity and to ensure the success and growth of plastics recycling, people must choose plastics that can be recycled. The plastics industry has voluntarily devised a coding system, which makes recycling plastics easier for people. The most commonly recycled plastics are those coded #1 and #2. For example, milk jugs and soda bottles can be recycled and re manufactured into a variety of new products.

About 1,200 soft drink containers could make the carpet in your living room, or 1000 milk jugs could make a park bench. Also, recycling plastic containers into new products saves about 50 percent of the energy used to make the same product from new material.

Here are a few more items that plastic is recycled into:

Plastic lumber is one of the more common things that plastic can be recycled into. Large structures like bridges can be made as well as various types of furniture. Outdoor decks made from plastic lumber is also great – not only is it eco-friendly, it rarely cracks and splinters and it is resistant to rot, mildew, and termites. Recycled plastic can also be spun into a fine thread-like material, which is used to make clothing such as fleece jackets and hats as well as fibre filling for sleeping bags and duvets.

Between seven and eight percent of the earth’s fossil fuels are used to produce plastic. The decomposition process of plastic in the landfill doesn’t begin for around 700 years. So keep this in mind, by recycling only one plastic bottle, we are able to save enough energy to power a 60-watt light bulb for six hours.

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