What is a waste?
A product that is a result of any process but has no use or may be harmful to the environment and people around is waste. It takes up space and may have hazardous effects on people and their surroundings, in some cases.
Present waste generation scenario in Australia-
A total of 67 Mt (metric tonne) of waste was generated as per the official reports on Waste generation for the years 2016-2017. It comprised of organic waste, masonry waste, hazardous waste, ash, paper, metal, etc. 9% of the total waste is under the category of hazardous waste. The households, government and commercial sectors are all contributors to this massive amount of waste generated throughout the country.
Recycling and its importance:
Recycling refers to the process of turning waste into reusable material. So recycling becomes increasingly important when we think about limited natural resources and their cost. These natural resources are scarce, limited and expensive. If the products from these resources can be recycled, it proves to help prevent the fast depletion of the funds. It reduces the chances of urban cities, turning into massive dumping grounds due to the excessive generation of waste material.
The method of recycling is environment-friendly; this means that the production process for recycled products involves less or no emission of pollutants. Thus, recycling also helps to lower water, air and land pollution levels.
From the economic point of view too, recycling helps to use the same resources more than once. It makes the process cost-effective and boosts the country’s economy by allowing it to make profits multiple times with the use of the same resources numerous times by reusing them.
Following are some of the significant ways in which recycling can help to improve the environment in Australia:
Lower levels of energy consumption
Manufacturing products from their virgin sources require a large amount of energy consumption. It results in a strain on the natural resources that are using to generate energy. As opposed to this, recycling requires very little energy to manufacture recycled and reusable products. For example, manufacturing paper from wood requires much more energy consumption than manufacturing paper from recycled pulp. Thus, people should take up recycling rather than manufacturing goods from their natural source.
Recycling is cost-effective; this means that the individual has a lower cost of input and a higher profit margin or higher utility from the product. It is a straightforward concept to understand. The individual has to pay only once for the natural resources or raw materials for a product. Once the product is used, it can be recycled and reused for other purposes as well. Thus, the individual gets to make multiple uses of the product for paying the cost once.
Lower levels of pollution
Recycling processes do not harm the environment in any way. Moreover, they contribute to improving their surroundings. The recycling procedure does not involve the emission of pollutants into the surroundings. Recycling causes less carbon emission; therefore, recycling helps to reduce pollution. Over the years, if recycling becomes the order of the day, it will help to improve the environment to a great extent.
Solves the problem of landfill
Most often, the waste material generated comes into use as landfill. Due to this procedure, most of the times hazardous wastes and non-biodegradable wastes also get into the landfill. These types of elements pollute the land and contaminate the soil. They also release harmful gases and toxins that may have severe repercussions of the health of the people living in the surrounding area. Recycling waste will reduce the need for it to be used as landfill, thus reducing land pollution and other harmful effects.
Given the current scenario of the environment and waste generation levels in Australia, recycling seems to be one of the prominent ways that could help to salvage the fast degrading environmental condition of the country. Recycling has to be taken up as a severe measure by both the government as well as the public so that people can enjoy a healthy and safe life.
You can check out these links below for more information about recycling.