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Need to Know

Understanding the Economics of Waste

While some materials, products and forms of packaging may not seem recyclable by design or composition, they very well may be.

According to The Huffington Post, economics is the main factor preventing the world’s most common waste streams from being recycled. And since waste is a human invention, it’s important to understand the many problems the world currently has with waste. For example, there are recycling options for snack bags and cigarette butts, but no one has gotten around to creating recycling options for most of the world’s post-consumer waste streams.

The Huffington Post has the details:

Many individuals are under the impression that some materials, products and forms of packaging are not recyclable by design or composition. While this is a commonly held belief among many people across the world, it is simply untrue. The real barrier preventing our most common waste streams from being recycled has to do with only one thing: economics.

To fully understand the problems with waste we currently have on this planet, it is first critical to note that waste as we know it is a uniquely human invention. In nature, there is no waste. It is a regenerative system where all outputs inevitably become useful inputs to another component of that system: a fallen tree becomes food for termites or a home to other organisms; a decomposing flower adds nutrients to the surrounding soil; and the remains of a lion’s recent hunt become a meal to scavengers.

Read the full story here.

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