Saves Natural Resources—Recycling allows natural resources to be used multiple times, decreasing the demand for virgin materials. Some materials, like glass, can be recycled infinitely which eliminates the need for new materials.
Reduces Carbon Emissions—Manufacturing products from recycled materials produces less pollution than creating products from virgin materials. Recycling prevents the growth of landfills, which creates methane pollution.
Reduces Landfill Usage—Each ton of material recycled results in 3 cubic yards of landfill space saved. Diverting items from landfills creates far-reaching environmental impacts.
Saves Natural Habitats for Wildlife—The availability of recycled materials curbs the need for destruction of valuable wildlife habitats around the world, lessening the competition between different species for habitat space.
Job Creation—According to a recent study, a 75% recycling rate in the US would result in the creation of 1.5 million jobs. Recycling also creates jobs at a much higher rate than landfills.
Cost savings—recycling reduces landfill costs while sometimes resulting in payment for the sale of sorted recyclables on the commodity markets.
Energy Savings—According to the National Recycling Coalition, it takes 95% less energy to recycle aluminum than it does to make it from raw materials. Making recycled steel saves 60%, recycled newspaper 40%, recycled plastic 70%, and recycled glass 40%.
Prevents Water Pollution—Items in landfills can leach chemicals and toxins into nearby water sources. Recycling prevents these items from ever being placed in landfills.
Reduces Litter—According to Keep America Beautiful, if you walk a mile on an average American highway you will see 6,729 pieces of litter.
Recycling Shrinks the Great Pacific Garbage Patch—This floating mass of litter is often cited as being larger than the entire state of Texas. Plastics and other items in this mass are consumed by the same seafood that is harvested by commercial fishermen. Recycling will slow its growth and prevent further damage to marine wildlife habitats.