Pink (and) triangleAuthor: will | Filed under: Breast Cancer, cancer, photo, pinkforoctober, recycling, resource
To begin with, look at the picture. Yes its Brunch ice cream lollies in their pink packaging. However take a closer look and can you see what’s missing.
You can just about make out the circular “this can be recycled” logo. Which really means “in theory this can be recycled but probably can’t”.
Now with a bit of invention, everything can be reused. Spectacle frames can be reused. Spent party poppers can be reused. Even cold porridge can be reused (Cut into wedges, fry and top with golden syrup). But recycling is something else.
Recycling is reprocessing an item back to its constituent parts so as to convert it (sometimes unrecognisably) in to a new item. Paper that has been pulped and reprocessed in to a new sheet of paper is still a sheet of paper. But it could have been a newspaper or junk mail in a previous life. A child’s toy is still plastic, but it could have been a milk carton or a bottle in a previous life.
In order to do this processing, a processor needs to know what the item is. Sometimes, as in the case of glass, its easy. Frequently in the case of plastic, its almost impossible. Not all plastics are created equal, but identical plastic bags may not be made from the same type of plastic. In order to tell them apart, the plastic should be marked (printed, stamped or embossed) with an international universal recycling code usually a number inside the international three arrow recycling symbol. Sometimes it’s the descriptive text written beside an empty arrow triangle. Without that identifying number or text, you have something for landfill.
Many recycling facilities and collection facilities won’t accept plastics without that logo and code (and sometimes they only takes a subset of the plastics). So keep an eye on the packaging. The circle means nothing, but the triangle might save the world. And complain if the packaging does not display the logo.
After all, without it, it’s junk.
Junk which will sit in a landfill for about 100,000 years and help deplete resources (unless landfill mining is an industry on 100 years time).
Of course there is always that suspicion that stuff sent for recycling goes to landfill anyway, but doing your part in this helps.