The estimation that nearly 50% of waste in Cape Town is generated from the private household means that everyone can and should do their bit towards making a difference. It should be a natural habit to reduce waste, reuse what we can and recycle – thereby saving landfill space and more importantly, natural resources.
Recycling not only helps to conserve the levels of certain raw materials, but it also helps to save the energy needed for new products to be produced.
By saving landfill space the effect of greenhouse gasses can be reduced as these are emitted from older landfills. There is also the reality that this space is not unlimited, but before running out of space completely, landfills will move further away from cities and rate-payers costs increased.
In addition, recycling contributes to job creation and economic growth. People who would otherwise have been unemployed assist with the collecting, sorting and transporting of recycled material
Less than 20% of recoverable material in SA is estimated to be recycled.
Each person in Cape Town produces an average of between 1,5 and 2 kg of waste a day and the majority of waste comes from high-income households.
In the City’s municipal area it is estimated that waste is made up of 46% household waste, 27% industrial 26% commercial.
An estimated 1/3 of food goes to waste? (Some say half!)
As many as 1,000,000 sea creatures each year are killed as a result of plastic bags and other plastic rubbish being thrown into the ocean.
An average dump consists of approximately one-third of packaging material.
1 ton of recycled paper can save 17 trees and results in 58% water savings, 64% energy savings and a substantial reduction in air pollution.
One recycled aluminium can provide the energy to run a TV for three hours and 125 cans can power one home for a day.
Recycling 11 plastic cool drink bottles can make the material required for a pair of men’s trousers.
One recycled glass bottle can save the electricity needed to light a 100-watt light bulb for four hours or a fluorescent bulb for 20 hours. It also results in a reduction of air pollution by 20% and water pollution by 50%.