Is There Really any Need for Recycling – Assignment Example

The paper "Is There Really any Need for Recycling" is a worthy example of an assignment on environmental studies. Believing (points in favor) based on article It really cuts down on the trash.” If it’s not recycled, it only creates more landfills, such as the 4 square miles one at Denver Arapahoe Disposal Site. And, this leads to the release of refuse-induced methane gas, which burned off becomes carbon dioxide in the atmosphere contributing to the greenhouse effect. After picking out the recyclables, the Waste Management markets and sells them to post-consumer recycled products. This is a very resourceful thing to do. Recycling reduces the need to mine and farm new raw materials for production. By recycling the raw material, we reduce the carbon footprint. Household hazardous waste can be toxic. So they should not be thrown in the trash or poured down the drain. Many electrical appliances can be usefully recycled. Believing (points in favor) based on article 2: Recycling prevents materials with the economic value from going to waste. “Well-run recycling programs cost less to operate than waste collection, landfilling, and incineration.” “Municipal solid waste landfills are the largest source of human-related methane emissions in the United States.” “Recycling’s true value comes from preventing pollution and saving natural resources and energy…” “Recycling conserves natural resources, such as timber, water and mineral ores.” For example, “recovered paper currently accounts for 37% of the paper industry’s fiber needs. Without recycling, this material would come from trees…” “Supplying recycled materials to industry uses less energy than supplying virgin materials that incur extra extraction and transportation costs.” “The public sector’s investment in local recycling programs pays great dividends by creating private sector jobs.” “Manufacturing with recycled materials, with very few exceptions, produces less air and water pollution than manufacturing with virgin materials.” “Recycling engenders a sense of community involvement and responsibility.” Doubting (points against) based on article 1: “Eco-anxiety is real and on the rise.” Is this statement really representative of people on the whole? Aren’t there more important things to worry about? How much do landfills really contribute to the greenhouse effect? Is the greenhouse effect even real? If it is, is it really that serious and how do we know for sure? This is stretching things too far. Throwing some rubbish here and there cannot cause the greenhouse effect, surely! This solid waste management scheme, it’s such a waste of time and tax payer’s money, and therefore unnecessary. “Picking up [paper waste] along busy streets can be downright dangerous.” So, just leave it! Why are they risking themselves picking up bits of paper?“And keeping trained labor for such physically taxing and monotonous work can be difficult.” The labor should be trained to do something more productive, enjoyable and useful. Doubting (points against) based on article 2: Although the market for recyclables has historically been erratic, rapid industrial development in nations like China has caused prices to improve…” This economic forecast must have been made before the bleak outlook of a looming global recession. Therefore, the economic basis for recycling is unsound. There are far more stable markets to engage in. The paper industry’s fiber needs is mentioned, but we are rapidly advancing in the computer/digital age of the ‘paperless office’, digitized text, ebooks, electronic kindles etc. This will reduce the need for paper.

It is not only extraction and transportation costs that should be considered. Quality should not be compromised. Virgin materials are of much better quality than recycled material.
Recycling programs create jobs, but they could also be created if you engage those workers in something else.
Community involvement should target more useful activities instead of recycling. Saying that “recycling is so popular” is unfounded because the American public has more entertaining and fun things to do.
Central Points
The need for recycling is largely linked to a general concern for the environment. For example, it prevents unsightly trash disposals and landfills and reduces the need to extract more natural resources. The alternative is greater pollution and long-term damages to our health and the environment. Whatever the extent of the link of landfills to the greenhouse effect, the main point is that it definitely creates a much cleaner environment simply because there is less trash around.
The suggestion that it is a waste of effort is untenable because the environmental impact is observed and real. It is, therefore, a very serious undertaking and we need to do everything we can to preserve our planet. In the process of recycling, the environment is cleaned, the recyclable items are made good use of, money is saved, jobs are created, the community is involved and so on. These are all benefits to the environment, economy, and local communities. Everyone would agree to live in a cleaner and healthier place and not an obnoxious one.
The economic justifications are also valid. The recyclable items are marketable; make things cheaper to produce because they cut down on costs so also catering to the low price markets, saves energy obtaining further natural resources etc. If something can be reused then it is, of course, better to recycle than to dispose of it.