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Source-Separated Recycling Collection Could be the Solution

Updated: Jul 30, 2022

Source-Separated Recycling vs. Curbside Recycling: Part 4

David Gardiepy

Source-separated recycling is a better way to recycle in the home. The process separates the different types of materials we throw away, rather than mixing them together as they are in commingle recycling programs. This allows each type of material to be recycled more efficiently, which gives us more usable products and reduces waste going into landfills. When we recycle in the home, we typically have a commingle recycling program. This means that all the different types of materials we throw away get mixed together and sent to a facility where they are separated. The facility then makes new products out of the different materials.

The majority of this article will discuss the potential benefits of source-separated recycling, however it is also important to highlight the drawbacks and potential hazards that existed when source-separated recycling was the standard for residents. Some of the past dangers included: injury to workers who collected materials, primarily shoulder, back and knee injuries. The materials being collected were often heavy, bulky and hard to carry. For example, glass bottles were very heavy and could easily hurt someone if dropped on their foot. Injuries were common due to workers climbing over fences and trying to lift large items into bins when they should have been using a lift truck or other mechanical lifting device. The injuries resulted from lifting heavy materials and carrying them to their trucks. The risk was also present for the workers who sorted through the source-separated materials, as they did not have the same protection from injury. The biggest concern with source-separated recycling programs is that all types of recyclables are mixed together. This creates an environment where people are at risk for contracting diseases such as hepatitis B and C, tetanus, staph infections and influenza.

Environmental concerns of source-separated recycling included a higher carbon footprint to collect recycling from residents. The recycling process also uses more energy than standard curbside collection programs. This increased the amount of greenhouse gas emissions, which could have a negative impact on the environment, especially when waste collectors are focused on profits over the planet. As a non-profit, EcoGeneration works to balance the two. In the end, the best way to reduce your carbon footprint and lower your waste is to choose EcoGeneration for all of your plastic recycling needs. We are passionate about protecting our planet and making sure that you have the best quality materials for reuse.

More efficient recycling process

Source-separated recycling is a more efficient process than other forms of recycling because it reduces the need for new waste facilities and keeps recyclable items out of landfills. This can save communities money, as well as create useful products from the collected materials.

Recycled plastic can be utilized in a variety of ways, including manufacturing new products and creating energy. Landfills are an inefficient way to get rid of waste because they take up space and often become toxic over time. By recycling your plastics, you keep them out of landfills and help protect our planet’s resources.

For example, if you separate your paper from your plastic bags and soda cans before putting them in your bin, they'll likely be used to make new products instead of being thrown away with food scraps or yard waste. Some cities, like Eugene Oregon, even have programs that turn compost into soil amendments like mulch and compost.

You can also find out if your city offers curbside recycling or dropoff locations for specific materials. You can usually find information on municipal websites or by calling the public works department. If you live in an apartment, ask your landlord about recycling programs.

Higher recycling rate compared to commingle recycling

Source-separated recycling has a higher recycling rate compared to commingle recycling. Source-separated recycling is more efficient because it separates different materials before recycling and reduces contamination. If done correctly, source-separated recycling can reduce the rates of contamination at the time of collection and allows waste workers the ability to quickly leave what is not accepted, or return it. This means that the material is more likely to be recycled. In commingle recycling, all materials are mixed together in a single stream of waste and sent to a facility where they are separated. This results in higher rates of contamination because different materials cannot be separated easily with this method.

Commingle recycling is less efficient because it mixes different materials before recycling, which adds to the processing time. The process also requires more energy. In commingle recycling, all materials are mixed together in a single stream of waste and sent to a facility where they are separated. This results in higher rates of contamination because different materials cannot be separated easily with this method. Commingle recycling is less efficient because it mixes different materials before recycling, which adds to the processing time. Commingle recycling is also more expensive because it requires more equipment and labor.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that the cost of commingled recycling is about twice as much as source-separated recycling, when analyzing the entire process of two different collection types. Most waste haulers are having a hard time marketing commingle recycling in the current market, however source-separated materials are sought after, as they are easier to handle and process.

Safer for workers

  • Workers at recycling facilities are less likely to be injured.

  • People residing near landfills and incinerators are less likely to be injured.

  • Recycling workers living near landfills or incinerators may experience fewer illnesses like asthma and other respiratory ailments, which often result from breathing in chemicals released by the waste management process.

Helps promote a cleaner environment

Source separated recycling is a great way to help promote a cleaner environment. When you recycle your waste, you are decreasing the amount of waste that goes into landfills and being put out in the environment. This reduces air and water pollution, as well as greenhouse gas emissions from landfills. In addition to this, source separated recycling also helps reduce the amount of waste going into our oceans and waterways which means less marine animals getting tangled up in plastic bags or suffocating on plastic pollution!

Also, when people don't sort their rubbish correctly it causes problems for recycling facilities who have to deal with sorting through mixed-up materials like paper products mixed with cans or bottles. By making sure that we all do our bit by separating all items before taking them away this will reduce these delays in processing times which means more efficient service provision overall!

Safer for the population as a whole

  • Less chance of injury to workers. Source-separated recycling allows for waste collection that is safer for the people who are doing it, when using rollcarts and mechanical lifts. This is because there is less risk of injuries caused by moving heavy loads or being exposed to potentially harmful substances like chemicals, glass and metals.

  • Less chance of injury to the public, animals and wildlife. The public can also be affected by recycling facilities if they're not built properly—they could be at risk from pollutants in the air, noise pollution or even damage to their property if a storm causes debris to fly through them onto lawns and gardens nearby!

  • Less risk of environmental damage. Resource recovery facilities that use significant amounts of water can have an impact on nearby aquatic ecosystems because they may release untreated water into waterways after treating sewage sludge, leachate, or blackwater (dark wastewater). By using less water overall, source-separated recycling reduces this kind of pollution as well as limiting how much energy goes into treating wastewater before it's released back into lakes, rivers or oceans—which also helps protect endangered species like salmon who rely on these ecosystems for survival!

Recycled goods can be made into useful products

By choosing to use recycled goods, you can create a number of products that are useful and cost-effective. Recycled goods can be used in the production of new products, or they can be turned into new products that are better than the ones we have now. For example, if you're looking for a cheap laptop computer, you might consider purchasing one made from recycled materials instead of buying a brand-new laptop at full retail price. Additionally, when your old laptop breaks down or becomes obsolete, you could recycle it with us so we can make sure it doesn't end up in landfills!

Source-separated recycling reduces the need for more waste facilities, generates revenues, keeps waste out of landfills, and creates useful products from recyclables

  • Source-separated recycling reduces the need for more landfills, materials recovery facilities, and transfer stations, which reduces the need for more waste facilities.

  • Source-separated recycling generates revenues that are often used to support local priorities like parks and recreation, public education, or affordable housing.

  • Source-separated recycling can create more jobs than currently exist with curbside recycling.

  • Source-separated recycling keeps waste out of landfills by keeping it out of the garbage that goes to landfills, reducing greenhouse gas emissions from decomposing organic matter in landfills and while preventing the contamination of groundwater sources.

  • Source-separated recycling creates useful products from recyclables: paper towels made from recycled newspapers are stronger than those made from virgin fibers; plastic bottles can be melted down into new bottles; metal cans can be melted down into steel or aluminum bars that can then be molded into new cans; glass bottles can be reused as containers or fiberglass insulation panels (for example).

  • Source-separated recycling has the ability to collect more materials than what is currently collected in any curbside commingle program that currently exists in the United States.

You be the judge

There are many benefits to source-separated recycling. It reduces the need for more waste facilities, generates revenues, keeps waste out of landfills, and creates useful products from recyclables. The process also reduces pollution and helps promote a cleaner environment. There are fewer health risks to workers and the public at large when they go into a facility where they don't have to handle mixed solid wastes or deal with dangerous chemicals used during commingling processes. Finally, there's less pressure on municipalities since they no longer need additional disposal sites just because there was an increase in garbage volume over time due to population growth. to population growth. This is especially important in areas where landfills are already at capacity or have reached their maximum capacity for waste disposal. We have thousands of acres of Landfills in the Unites States already, do we really want more? Do we really want to see Short Mountain in Lane County to continue to expand?


By supporting us, you are helping us protect the environment through source-separated plastics recycling, educating the Pacific Northwest regarding the impact of waste, and overall waste prevention. We are sustained by supporters like you, Thank you! Please consider supporting us today with a monetary donation, or sign up to become a volunteer.

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