Recycling

Recycling Paper:

The United States Environmental Protection Agency‎ has found that recycling reduces water pollution by 35% and air pollution by 74% in comparison with making virgin paper. Just one company - “Waste Management" recycles enough paper every year to save 41 million trees.

Paper can not be recycled indefinitley because the fibers are degraded with each recycling and after being recycled four or five times the fibers become too short and weak to be useful in making paper.

Although recycling has proven to be a phenomenal aid in reducing our paper consumption and hence the eco-impacts of paper production, the best solution is to leave trees in forests and use hemp and other more sustainable options instead, or at least in addition.  Using trees for paper is too energy intensive and disruptive to the environment to continue using.  Hemp can produce 320x more fiber per acre per year than trees.

 

Recycling Plastic Bags?

As for recycling plastic bags, very little of it happens, only 5% or so.  It is not as easy to recycle plastic bags as other things because they can only be recycled at special disposal centers or now some grocery stores take them.

Plastic bag recycling is more accurately called "down-cycling", because the original purpose can not be replicated.  Plastic bags can be turned into synthetic materials such as composite lumber for example, but don't end up becoming plastic bags again.  Plastic bags are made only from virgin resin.

Many plastic bags end up in traditional recycling facilities that are not capable of dealing with them and their machines get gummed up and take twenty minute intervals several times a day to clean up.

Also, plastic bags that are supposed to get recycled, often end up getting shipped to third world countries where they can be incinerated more cheaply creating toxic waste for innocent people.

REDUCING is Better than Recycling: You can easily reduce your consumption of single-use plastic and paper bags and containers by reusing.

  • Use reusable produce bags, reusable bulk bags and reusable bakery bags 
  • Bring your own jars or mugs for coffee and beverages

                        

 

 

 

 

 

  • Bring your own glass containers for “to-go” and “take-out” food

                                       

Recycling is a really ingenious idea that works great for reducing our trash and CO2 footprints, but if you can completely replace single-use items with long lasting reusable ones you'll have the greatest positive impact.

 LEARN MORE:

From garbage to garden....why composting makes sense!

LEARN MORE:

  1. Plastic in the Oceans
  2. Care for the Whole
  3. Hands On Hemp bags

In 2010, Americans generated about 250 million tons of trash.

54.2% of it went to landfills
33.2% got recycled or composted,
12.6% was burned, with some energy recovery.

Benefits of Recycling:

  • New products can be made from recycled vs. virgin materials
  • Disposal is not an issue
  • Reduces green house gases, air and water pollution associated with making new products from raw materials.
  • The amount the U.S. recycled in 2008 reduced the amount of carbon emissions comparable to removing the emissions of 33 million passenger cars.
  • Recycling, instead of trashing, creates cleaner land, air, water, overall better health, and a more sustainable economy.

                                                   



 

 

About:

We are a woman-owned business whose vision is two-fold: to make a difference through what we do and how we do it. It is not easy to better our selves or our world, but we know the two go hand in hand. Our bags have taken us to the very brink of an ultimate question: what is true personal and planetary sustainability and what changes do we need to make to get from here to there? We hope to inspire such a journey of questioning for others as we’re all in the same boat together. (Learn more)

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