Why Recycle

Recycling conserves natural resources.
Recycling conserves natural resources.

By recycling a commodity, such as newspaper, magazines or cardboard, we are reducing the number of trees cut down to produce that paper. By recycling products made from plastic, such as water bottles, we reduce the use of oil. By recycling metal containers, such as aluminum cans, we reduce the need for those metals. While materials such as trees, when managed responsibly, can be replaced, materials such as oil are finite, which means that once they are used up, they are gone forever.

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Recycling conserves energy.
Recycling conserves energy.

Energy saved by recycling a single aluminum can would power a television for a full three hours. Recycling a single plastic bottle can save enough energy to power a 60 watt light bulb for six hours. Recycling one glass bottle saves enough energy to power a 100 watt light bulb for four hours. Recycling steel uses only a quarter of the energy that would be needed to make new steel.

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Recycling reduces waste.
Recycling reduces waste.

​By using waste reduction techniques such as recycling, we can reduce the amount of waste being sent to the landfill and extend the life of the landfill dramatically. In Alachua County, the Southwest Landfill able was able to stay open four extra years due to the recycling efforts of County citizens. Keeping landfills open longer saves taxpayers' money. Locating, permitting, building and operating new landfills are very expensive. New landfills also require a great deal of land which in many cases requires them being located closer to communities than the residents would like.

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Recycling saves you money.
Recycling saves you money.

Alachua County and the City of Gainesville operate on a volume-based waste collection service, the less garbage you produce, the less you pay. So, reducing your waste stream and recycling as much as possible can save you money.

False
Buying recycled materials completes the reuse loop.
Buying recycled materials completes the reuse loop.

There are a wide variety of products available to consumers that are made from recycled materials. There are post-consumer content products such as soda cans, glass bottles, and newspapers that are made from recycled materials. Other creative uses for recycled materials are becoming more common. For instance, park benches and fleece jackets can now be made from recycled plastic bottles. Shredded tires are used to create a soft surface in many playgrounds and the base for roads. Recycled paper is being used as insulation in houses. Roofing tiles can be made from recycled glass. Ground up glass is also being used to replace beach sand which is lost to erosion.

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So recycle right Alachua County!
So recycle right Alachua County!

Trash bags all over the country and right here in Alachua County are filled with materials that could otherwise be recycled. Currently only 32% of the solid waste being collected in Alachua County is being recycled. So this week, before taking out the trash, take a look at what you are really throwing away.

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Contact

  • Waste Collection
  • 5620 NW 120th Lane
  • Gainesville, FL 32653
  • Phone: 352-338-3233
  • TDD/TTY users, please call 711 (Florida Relay Service)
  • Office Hours
    Monday - Thursday
    7:00am-5:30pm
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