The plastic bottle is a great invention, but we also know the plastic bottles can hurt our environment. About 60 million water bottles are thrown away every day in America, but one plastic bottle will take 700 years to break down. These bottles fill up our landfills, and we need landfill space to bury trash that can’t be recycled. Throwing away plastic also hurts the environment in other ways. As plastic decays, it can give off chemicals that get into our water and air and can make people, plants, and animals sick.
The Process of Recycling Plastic
The bottles has to be collected from homes, businesses, and other sites. Every bottle must be separated from metal, glass, and other things that people put into recycle bins.
Step 2: Sorting
The plastic bottles are also sorted by the type of plastic they’re made from, which is known as the resin identification Code 1 to 7. Each number represents a different type of plastic, and some types are easier to recycle than others, some are cannot be recycle. Bottle and non-bottle plastics are created through different manufacturing processes. Due to different melting characteristics, they cannot be mixed in the recycling stream.
#1 Bottles (PET or PETE), Some Examples Include
- Soda bottles
- Water bottles
- Juice bottles
- Sports drink bottles
- Liquor bottles
- Salad dressing bottles
- Vegetable oil bottles
- Food jars
#2 Bottles (HDPE), Some Examples Include
- Milk jugs
- Water jugs
- Laundry detergent bottles
- Bleach bottles
- Shampoo & conditioner bottles
- Body wash bottles
- Body wash bottles
- Liquid cleaning product bottles
Step 3: Resizing & Washing
Resizing consists of shredding or granulating the plastic waste into small particles. This increases the surface area of the plastic, making it easier to process, reshape, and transport if needed.
Usually, it uses the bottle crusher machine to shred they into the require size.
Step 4: Compounding
Compounding is when the small particles are smashed and melted together into plastic pellets. These pellets can then be used in the production of other plastic products, such as engineered wood products, carpeting, floor mats, tiles, furniture, motor oil, pipes and pails.
What plastic items can be placed in the recycling bin?
- First, determine if your container is a bottle. A bottle is defined as a container with a neck or opening that is narrower than its base.
- After determining that your container is a bottle, turn it over and look for a triangle with a number 1 or 2 inside.
- Your bottle with a #1 or#2 Resin Identification Code can now be placed in your bule bin for curbside collection.
- Bottles labeled #1 & #2 constitute the bulk of consumer container plastics and have the strongest markets for recycling.
- Bottle and non-bottle plastics are created through different manufacturing processes. Due to different melting characteristics, they cannot be mixed in the recycling stream.
- Non-bottle plastics and containers made of other resin types are contaminants to the #1 and #2 bottle product marketed by the solid waste authority. These contaminants lessen the market value of the product, and create additional waste for disposal by the processor who buys the bottles.