How Does Recycling Help the Earth?

Each person in the U.S. throws away about 1,500 pounds of garbage each year. With over 300 million people living in the U.S. today, that's a LOT of garbage! We can help solve this problem by recycling. Cans, bottles, plastic, and paper can all be recycled.

When garbage is recycled, it is made into new things. This saves precious resources. New newspaper can be made from old, recycled paper. This saves trees from being cut down to make new paper. Aluminum soft drink cans are recycled to make new cans. Less aluminum ore is needed to be mined from the Earth.

Making paper from trees uses more energy than making paper from old paper. When trees are cut, it takes many years to grow more of them. Making aluminum cans from new materials uses much more energy than making cans from recycled ones. In fact, 90 to 95 percent less energy is needed to make new cans from old ones!

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