Questions tagged [recycling]

using materials that would otherwise be waste to manufacture new materials. For questions specifically on [upcycling] use that tag, for questions on [reuse] use that tag.

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41 views

Innovative design solutions to increase recycling rates among university students

I have an assignment to research innovate design solutions to increase recycling rates, in particular recycling rates among university students. I've found an excellent research report on topic (but ...
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How many times can plastic be recycled?

This answer to another question brought up the point that "recycling" of plastic is often more accurately "downcycling." From Wikipedia: Downcycling, also referred to as cascading, describes the ...
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1answer
268 views

How can I form heat sinks from waste aluminum?

I am designing a thermo-electric generation system that would generate electricity from the heat of my wood stove. The active components are bismuth telluride TEG cells that use the Seebeck effect in ...
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2answers
210 views

How to recycle almond shells?

I have seen this related question - but it was about the almond peels and not their shells: How do I recycle these? My relatives advised me to burn it all up, as it drives away mosquitoes[citation ...
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Environmental benefit of recycling small cables from electronics and holiday mini lights?

For electronics, I've watched some online videos explaining commercial shredding operations and some home based scrapper videos showing how they strip insulation from common household electrical ...
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3answers
2k views

What is this candy wrapper made of? Solely plastic or mixed with something else?

I am an avid recycler - whenever I get the chance to recycle, I do it. The only problem is, I can't mix materials when recycling. I want to recycle the following: It's wrapping for candy - in this ...
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Is going paperless really that much better for the environment [duplicate]

Say you want to read some document, like an newspaper article, If you read it online you still have to power a screen, which is powered by a computer or mobile device, which these days are becoming ...
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250 views

How to sustainably dispose of or break down used cooking oils?

I have recently wondered what I should be doing with my used kitchen oils having seen a news article about an enormous fatberg clogging the sewer in London. Obviously putting it down the sink really ...
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4answers
270 views

To what extent (if any) are electric vehicle batteries recyclable?

Are there any existing procedures for the recycling of electric vehicle car batteries, and if so what are they? In particular I'm interested in those used in the Volkswagen E-Golf, though general ...
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4answers
350 views

Why should we bother to recycle household waste if it's only a small portion of all waste that is generated?

For the past two months, I have been investing some attention and effort in taking care of setting aside all my dry waste in my room's bin. I wish to separate the recyclable ones and the unrecyclable ...
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5answers
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Are used “blister packs” recyclable?

Now, in management of recurring everyday waste, this is something totally unavoidable. Are tablet strips (what they call blister pack strips), after use, recyclable? Can they be dumped with dry ...
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Are biscuit wrappers (the shiny looking ones) recyclable ? Can I dump them in regular dry waste collecting containers? [duplicate]

Recurring waste has been a recurring theme in my questions about waste management. Want to ensure recyclability or reduce waste in everyday use. Are these biscuit wrappers recyclable ? A ...
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1answer
502 views

Best type of recyclable plastic to melt into a clay mold to produce a small figurine

What would be the best type of plastic to melt into a clay mold, to produce a small figurine, something that a person would have normally, already in their household - such as soda bottles, milk ...
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2answers
402 views

What is the real impact of the new Adidas collection made with recycled plastic bottles?

Adidas has a new collection made with recycled plastic bottles recovered from the oceans. I have been trying to find the real environmental impact of this collection but it has been difficult to ...
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Dishwasher or paper plates: which are worse?

After running the dishwasher last night it struck he how much energy it must consume: from heating large amounts of water to the motorized pumps and spinners to the heated plate drying. Then there's ...
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Using glass bottles in walls of buildings [duplicate]

I have seen pictures of homes and buildings in dry climates were they have used glass bottles in the walls with what looks like either concrete or mud. Is this just for aesthetics? Do they provide ...
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1answer
2k views

How to recycle cartridges for ballpoint or rolling pens?

How can we recycle ballpoint pens or gel pens when they no longer work? Consider these scenarios: 1) Cartridge is empty. What we see now is ONLY a plastic stick with a ball point there. 2) Cartridge ...
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1answer
1k views

Environmental impact of using paper towels for hand drying

At work, I have noticed a staggering level of paper towel usage and it's disheartening to see it getting wasted, even though hand dryers are installed in all rest rooms. I plan to propose reducing the ...
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1answer
137 views

Does buying wooden furniture help fight global warming?

Given the assumptions that: emissions of CO2 are indirectly contributing to global warming CO2 is captured in the bodies of trees during their lifetime CO2 is released from the bodies of trees when ...
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Which chemical should be added on recycling LDPE to make the granules brighter [closed]

What should be added while recycling LDPE(low density polyethylene ) to brighten the granules. Which chemical should be used and how much amount.
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1answer
131 views

Should cardboard contaminated with unknown dirt be recycled?

Lately, postal cardboard packages have been arriving with an increasing level of exterior contamination with generic black dirt. Although the composition of this dirt is unknown, this can be a concern ...
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0answers
119 views

Melting of plastics in absence of air [closed]

Kindly advice me whether melting of plastic in absence of air produce harmful fumes or other chemicals? Whether it is a safer practice compared to normal melting?
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1answer
249 views

Why do we produce black plastic items if they cannot be recycled?

My local council accepts white plastic for recycling. If white is ok, why do we produce meat packaging, frozen meal packaging etc in black?
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7answers
960 views

Mismatched socks? What to do with hundreds of them?

I may be unique here but over the years I have collected perhaps hundreds of mismatched socks of various sizes and colors. Some are good cotton and others are like new. Since I have a large family and ...
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2answers
178 views

Most sustainable type of cream container?

The grocery co-op where I shop offers local, organic cream from three different farms, which use three different types of recyclable containers (all roughly the same volume): Mini version of clear ...
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1answer
1k views

Do I need to remove sellotape to recycle Christmas wrapping paper?

If sellotape or plastic stickytape is left on wrapping paper when I recycle it, does it matter? (or how much does it matter?) What happens to it during the recycling process? Let's assume I ...
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3answers
608 views

Is fleece clothing a cheap and sustainable alternative to conventional cotton?

I was wondering whether fleece clothing is a good, cheap and above all sustainable alternative to conventional cotton, which uses a lot of pesticides and takes a lot of water to grow. The other ...
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1answer
2k views

Can the card-boxes that contain toothpaste tubes be recycled?

I looked everywhere on the box itself but no notice at all. They usually have colourful prints on them and seem plastic-coated to give a "shiny" effect, but on the other hand they don't look very ...
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2answers
600 views

Is there any engineering discipline concerned with recycling?

I was searching for stand-alone bachelor degrees in the field of Engineering related to recycling. Is there a particular discipline in the engineering field concerned with the various ways and ...
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3answers
20k views

Why can't black plastic be recycled?

My local council now takes most types of plastic bottles, pots, tubs and trays in the recycling bin. But they specifically exclude black plastic containers. Is there a reason for this? Why can't ...
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2answers
727 views

If coffee pods are made of aluminium, what are the negative environmental effects?

The boss of Nespresso has called coffee pods an environmental disaster. One of my friends recently commented: Coffee pods are the environmental equivalent of beating baby seals to death. I'm ...
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1answer
146 views

How to recycle disintegrated plastic bags, without negatively impacting the environment?

We've just gotten some old books out of the loft, and it appears the plastic bags they were in have disintegrated/biodegraded. What is the most environmentally friendly way to dispose of them?
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2answers
90 views

Does the Reduce-Reuse-Recycle rule always apply?

Does the triple-R rule (or its extended version like Reduce-Reuse-Repair-Recycle) apply to everything, in that order, as the most sustainable process? Just wondering if you could think of any ...
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1answer
46 views

How do municipalities calculate reported diversion and recycling rates?

How do municipalities calculate reported diversion and recycling rates? From what I can tell, most are using surveys of private recycling companies without a standard system of measure or process to ...
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1answer
667 views

How does bioplastic recyclability compare with petrochemical-based plastic recyclability?

I am curious to know how recyclable bioplastics are. For example, how recyclable would a polylactic acid (PLA) cup be when compared to a conventional PET cup? Can the material go through a comparable ...
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1answer
1k views

How recyclable is a sealable coffee bag?

I am aware of a few ways to "upcycle" a sealable coffee (ground or whole beans) bag (see photo), but how recyclable is it? I am sure it depends a lot on where I live, but I was wondering if you knew ...
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4answers
421 views

What alternatives there are to recycling paper?

My parents live in a small place where paper is not recycled. They don't even separate the paper from the rest of the residues. I can't carry their paper away to recycle it when I visit them so I was ...
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4answers
636 views

What will be the effect of PET-eating bacteria in society?

In a very recent paper scientists talk about the discovery of a bacterium ("Ideonella sakaiensis") which can "eat" PET, one of the most common types of plastic. I was wondering what effect this ...
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1answer
122 views

Recycling symbols on greeting card - what do these symbols mean?

I just bought a card for some friends. It was published by a company called Portfolio, London. It has the following printed on the back: 1. What do these symbols mean? 2. Where do they come from? 3....
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1answer
4k views

How can I recycle a disposable lighter?

I have been collecting lately disposable lighters as these: I want to recycle them but I don't know exactly what I should do. Should I separate the metallic and plastic parts and recycle them ...
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1answer
120 views

Glass Recycling Case Study

Does anyone have a case study on community glass recycling. Specifically the cost/ton to crush/pulverize and screen into usable traction control sand for winter applications?
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1answer
187 views

How can I enforce the garbage recycling?

Despite we have adopted some European legislation here in Estonia regarding the recycling in 2004 and we have got some containers for sorted wasted on the streets for those environmental enthusiats, I ...
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2answers
628 views

Store drop-off vs curbside recycling plastic bags

The curbside recycling service in my town accepts plastic bags. I wonder whether there is any difference in the recycling process (thus there is any environmental benefit) between this and taking them ...
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1answer
229 views

Scrapping a mouse - what should I focus on?

First of all, I would truly appreciate your help since I'm still a rookie when it comes to scrapping. I stumble upon e-waste quite often which is the prime reason why have I decided to become a ...
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1answer
129 views

What is the most valuable “thing” I should focus on when scrapping electronics? [closed]

Since I'm still getting to know the world of sustainable living, recycling, scrapping, and everything related to that - I would be very grateful if someone gave me a few pieces of advice. I would ...
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3answers
3k views

Is the bag of cat food recyclable?

I am still getting to know the world of recycling and I have come across a minor issue when it comes to learning the difference between recyclable items. I have several cat food bags (OK CAT Health &...
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2answers
602 views

Reusing or recycling old CD's and DVD's

I have some stacks of old CD's and DVD's. The piles includes traditional CD's and DVD's, as well as writable and re-writable discs of various types. In order to prevent these from ending up in a ...
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1answer
545 views

Composting used white shredded paper

I happen to have a lot of white used paper (with black ink on it, either from a printer or a pen), and also a very wet compost bin (I guess it's because my soil is heavy clay and the drainage is quite ...
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2answers
177 views

What should I do with my old smart phone?

What are the recycling methods applicable for a smart phone? People often change smart phones and the number of unused phones have become a problem for the environment. I came to know about some ...
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1answer
140 views

Coffee grounds to water plants

So, I want to try recycling the water I use to rinse the coffee grounds out of my morning coffee. The thought is, a plant of some description on the (north facing) windowsil of my kitchen. The ...