Trash Talking: The Recycling Hoax Explained
Recycling specific material is supposed to be good for the planet, save money and make us feel better. The truth is recycling is all a big "SCAM".
ALL the recyclables collected over all these many years has had little impact on the planet and in SOME cases the trash sorted isn't even being recycled. In an effort to save the company money it's going straight into your local landfill anyway.
First, Some Background
Remember the 70s when this "Save the Planet" recycling fad began? It was so attractive it became chic to save and sort our trash. This seemed like the right thing to do and it made us FEEL GOOD.
Some people became totally possessed with this guilt-free worship to the trash police Gods. They tried to convince all their friends and neighbors to help them save Mother Earth one piece of plastic / one aluminum can at a time".
And who can forget the crying American Indian? There was the famous 1971 TV commercial featuring Iron Eyes Cody shedding a tear over the trashing of his native land (not to mention us taking over his land and moving him to a reservation). All of this was just another pale-face lie.
Never mind that ... the Keep America Beautiful campaign was incredibly successful in raising awareness.
Now, this was LONG before Al Gore started preaching about the Human-Caused Global Warming. Recycling became the battle cry of a not-so-silent minority of environmentalists (aka - tree-huggers).
Even before that (in the 50s) came the introduction of disposable bottles. Soon bottles were everywhere. States were considering bans on disposables. So what did American Can, Owens-Illinois and Coke do? They joined together and basically invented the concept of litter.
Thus began the campaign promoting the new fear that trash was killing this planet. They even managed to sell the concept that WE were responsible for this destruction of nature ... "Packages Don't Litter, People Do. It became OUR job to save it."
Of course, this successfully deflected the industry's role in actually causing the problem of trashing planet earth.
Keep America Beautiful focused on three key issues: litter prevention, waste reduction / recycling and community greening & beautification. They claim this could be accomplished through a combination of community organizing, public education and the fostering of public/private partnerships.
This drum has been beaten so long and loud by this minority of "tree-huggers" some people actually believe it to be true. Today we find many communities forcing their citizens to sort their trash before pick up. And they are "happy" to do it ... gotta save the planet and all that, you know?
Today, more people recycle than vote.
"Recycling may be the most wasteful activity in modern America. A waste of time and money, a waste of human and natural resources" - The New York Times
This scam is actually being perpetrated by big business on the citizens and municipalities of America.
Who sponsors the National Recycling Coalition? Look! Its the same people behind America Recycles Day: Coca-Cola, Pepsico, Anheuser-Busch, Coors, Owens-Illinois, International Bottled Water Association, the same people who brought you that other PR fraud ... Keep America Beautiful.
Recycling is simply the transfer of producer responsibility for what they produce to the taxpayer who has to pick it up and take it away.
Of course EVERYONE wants to save the planet. More importantly everyone wants to THINK they can save the planet. The sad truth is ... It Can't Be Done.
You need only to watch the 2004 episode of Penn & Teller's Bullshit! on Showtime. They explain that it actually takes more energy to recycle a plastic bottle than to make a new one.
The good news is that recycling aluminum cans DOES work. It actually cost less to make a can from old dead cans than from scratch. Collecting them and turning them into a center DOES pay.
Products made from recycled material sounds "neat and cool" but simply save us NO money or resources to make.
At least all this paper being recycled save trees, Right??
Wrong. Today we grow trees especially for making paper. Almost all of our paper comes from virgin pulp from tree farms. The truth is recycling saves NO TREES.
In the 80s the trash industry faced another challenge; The Landfill Crises. The EPA put out a report saying we were running out of land. This was actually false and the guy who wrote that report now backtracks and admits he was wrong. This also led us to more recycling.
Cash for Trash
Nowadays citizens, including the homeless, can take their "recyclables" directly to the centers; items like unwanted paper, cardboard, plastic, Styrofoam, shrink wrap, aluminum and other scrap metals, carpet padding, car headboards and even insulating material from the manufacture of appliances. This can fetch some bucks when baled and sold to recycling mills.
Most companies pay about $300 for an onsite roll-off trash container. And this $300 does not include the additional cost brought about by the weight of waste materials within the container. If your container is being hauled away twice a week and it is half full of cardboard, that means that you are paying at least $300 per week to have your waste cardboard hauled away.
Most of the time, that cardboard is being separated by the waste hauler (who charges you the $300) and sold to a recycling mill. So not only does the waste hauler collect money from you to haul the cardboard away, he is making money selling it as well.
How did you think Waste Management managed to sponsor the PGA's Phoenix Open this year? Gives you a new meaning to "Think Green" and join the "Green Revolution", doesn't it? (we mean green money)
Where do those materials go once they're picked up? Will they will actually be recycled? How do you know they’re not just going to end up in a landfill? It's impossible to say. But MANY companies have been caught just tossing everything into the landfill.
We'll Come To You
In 1973, University City, Missouri was the first city to begin a curbside recycling program for newspaper collection. Today, its estimated that there's an excess of 10,000 curbside recycling programs across the United States.
The EPA has figured that, of the nation's trash, about 30% is recycled today. They also admit that 40% of the trash picked up to be recycled ends up in a landfill instead.
Fact is, in almost every community, its MORE expensive to recycle than it is to simply throw it in their land fill.
At first, people had to separate their recycling. Plastics went in one bin, glass in another, paper in a third. But with the introduction of single-stream collection, people can put all of their recyclables in one place.
Today is cost us about $50 to $60 a ton to simply throw or trash away into landfills. To recycle, it costs THREE TIMES MORE. To send men to your house to pick up your and handle your recyclables costs $150 a ton. They were coming by anyway weren't they?
This burden of transporting, sorting and cleaning for re-use greatly impacts the local communities.
Isn't this recycling thing supposed to be helping by saving us money and saving us energy?
Oh and don't forget what the federal government does to programs that don't work - Subsidies! This cost us tax payers nearly EIGHT billion dollars a year.
Are there any Recycle Centers run privately? Maybe a few. But these centers are NOT truly profitable (even with all this trash) and most are run by local municipalities, subsidized by the government. They are actually a public subsidy - a tax - thanks to the garbage police.
Penn Jillette explains; "We're feeling good for no reason."
Yep - this is a scam that only benefit is that it makes us FEEL GOOD
Now, that you know the facts how do you feel now?