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Why Should We Actually Separate Waste?

4 min

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13. July 2021
Why Should We Actually Separate Waste? 1 Renata Novak je strokovnjak na področju vsebinskega marketinga, digitalnega marketinga in upravljanja blagovnih znamk.
Why Should We Actually Separate Waste? 1 Renata Novak is a brand manager, digital marketer and content writer.

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Waste separation is extremely important. After all, it is the year 2019, and throwing different types of waste in the same bin is almost impossible to imagine – there is more and more talk about caring for our planet, and separating wasteful material is the least an individual can do to help the ecological movement. Separation allows waste to be processed in the right way – pieces of plastic in the paper bin cause a lot of inconvenience in later recycling or in the manufacture of new products from old materials. The sustainable treatment of our waste turns out to be extremely important – most of packaging is made of plastic, new paper from waste paper, and biogas from organic waste. In addition, there is also the possibility of reusing certain items to avoid unnecessary waste.

Basic Reasons to Sort Waste

Waste separation is not just about sorting rubbish into different containers – it also makes it easier for sanitation workers to make sure that this waste is actually recycled and reused. Even if separation seems completely pointless to you because “most garbage is dumped together anyway and then separated again,” your actions are about a higher purpose of education. By separating plastic, paper, glass and bio-waste, you can raise your children with our planet in mind – after all, it is our children who will live here for decades to come.

Of course, there are many more reasons for proper waste separation. Proper handling of waste:

  • ensures less combustion of residual waste and thus less CO2 emissions
  • has a positive effect on the greenhouse effect
  • enables saving up on raw materials

Separating waste therefore reduces the incineration of residual waste, which in turn reduces carbon dioxide emissions. The latter is extremely important as it has a positive effect on the greenhouse effect. In addition, the separation of waste saves on raw materials because it is reused and recycled – for example, with proper waste management, fewer trees are cut down for paper, less oil is needed for plastic production, and less rare metals are needed for tin and appliance production. Garbage separation therefore has a significant impact outside our households as well.

All of these facts are of paramount importance when it comes to caring for the environment. With proper care of wasteful material, we can ensure a lesser pollution and faster decomposition of materials that can be reused through the recycling process.

So How Do I Go About Separating Waste?

In order to properly handle household waste, we must first know where the individual types of waste actually belong. Practical bins for separate waste collection, on which the types of waste materials are clearly marked, come to our aid when separating. However, since there are a lot of them, let me briefly introduce you to the main groups of waste that are most often found in our households.

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Plastic Waste

Plastic waste is – you guessed it – waste made of plastic! Containers, bottles, and even many kitchen utensils make up the bulk of household waste (shampoos, toothpaste, detergent packaging, yogurt pots, meat wrappers, cheese and butter tupperware … I could go on and on!). From the collected plastic, which it consists of, it is possible to make a huge number of useful products, such as building materials or simply new packaging.

Plastic waste should be collected in appropriate bags, which you could not long ago get for free when shopping in supermarkets. However, because larger stores also want to contribute to a cleaner environment, such bags are becoming increasingly difficult to obtain – so it is easiest to choose an eco alternative and simply take the waste to the nearest container.

Paper and Cardboard

Waste paper and cardboard include all products made of pure paper, as it can be recycled even up to eight times to make new paper. This is often the reason for paper collection campaigns (which mostly take place in primary schools) to collect several tonnes of waste cardboard and paper. Get rid of old newspapers, leaflets, magazines, books, packaging and boxes and throw them in the trash.

Glass Waste

Glass waste is also called packaging glass, from which it is possible to produce new glass countless times by separating materials and recycling – this saves a lot of raw materials and energy. Many people also distinguish between different colours of glass (white, green, brown), as these are used to make various new products, such as perfumes, glasses and bottles.

Biological Waste

Biological waste includes all plants that are grown in the garden but are used in full when preparing meals – that is, mainly leftover fruit and vegetables. Of course, it also includes various flowers and other waste of natural origin, such as eggshells, tea bags, coffee filters, sawdust … Many people decide to make their own compost and feed the soil with it, but others do not have this opportunity because of living in the city. For this reason, biological waste must be disposed of in a dedicated bin. Part of the organic waste is incinerated, fermented or gasified, and used for bioenergy. The rest, however, finds its way to many farms and contributes to the fertility of the soil from which fruits and vegetables grow again.

Waste separation is all of our responsibility. The legislation in the field of waste management dictates that we should separate it already at the place of their creation – this also includes your household. How do you handle waste in your homes?

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