Did you know that the average American sends 64 tons of waste to the landfill during their lifetime?
Did you also know that if everyone in the world lived as Americans do, we would need four planets to house all of our waste and to meet the demand for our natural resources and to absorb all the pollution?
The United States have been referred to as the ‘magazine states’ if that is any indication as to how wasteful they are. Americans throw away enough office paper every year to build a wall of paper from Seattle to New York and that wall of paper would be twelve feet high. Every year they throw away that much office paper!
Americans use 2.5 million plastic bottles every hour. Just Americans! 2.5 million! The majority of those bottles are then thrown away after one single use. Americans throw away tens of millions of glass jars and bottles every year. They throw away so many glass jars and bottles that they could fill a skyscraper every two weeks with that amount.
Another scary fact is that Americans throw away or dispose of 100 million aluminum and steel cans every day. This is enough steel cans and aluminum to build a roof over the entire city of New York City.
Did you know that recycling just one glass bottle has enough impact to save enough electricity to burn a 100-watt light bulb for four hours? Or that same single glass bottle that you recycled has enough impact to run a computer for 30 minutes.
And did you also know that making one aluminum can from a recyclable material uses nearly 95 percent less energy than if you were to make one aluminum can from raw materials?
Even if you aren’t a dedicated recycler you can make a difference by even a few small recycling measures. Recycling and composting alone decreased amounts to U.S. landfills by 70 million tons this was up 34 million tons in 1990. This doubled in ten years.
The good news is the percentage of American waste that is recycled or composted is now lingering around 27 percent. This statistics is due to the fact that many communities are reporting waste reduction levels just around 50 percent.
Even making just small changes to your lifestyle can make huge differences to the Earth and our environment.