You realize it's irresponsible, but you've always been the sort of person who just throws recyclable materials in the trash. Somebody you know has really been on your case about this lately, saying you should at least bring your aluminum cans to a scrap metal recycling center like Cherry City Metals. You figure since you don't need the cash, why bother? There are some definitive reasons to recycle aluminum, even if you don't care about getting paid for it.
You Help Save Energy
Manufacturing new aluminum requires some 90 percent greater energy usage than working with recycled aluminum does. New metal has to be mined, processed, smelted and refined before factories can turn it into useful products.
How much gasoline would you have to dump out on the ground before you'd feel troubled about the expense? The Aluminum Association explains that throwing away your average 12-oz. aluminum soda or beer can is like dumping out six ounces of gasoline. By the time you've thrown 20 cans in the trash, you've essentially dumped out an entire gallon of gas.
You Help Manufacturers and Consumers Save Money
When factories can buy recycled aluminum, they spend substantially less than when they buy new aluminum because the new material costs so much more to produce. Those savings are passed along to consumers in the form of lower product prices.
Aluminum has an unusual ability to maintain its chemical composition during recycling. It can be recycled over and over again without a reduction in quality. Thus, manufacturers are eager to buy recycled aluminum to include in items such as planes, trains, passenger vehicles, bicycles, home improvement products, furniture, and even beverage cans to be recycled once more.
You Help the Environment
By recycling aluminum, you reduce the footprint of strip mining on the land and the toxins unleashed during the process. In addition, new aluminum production emits a significant amount of greenhouse gases.
You also reduce the amount of trash going into landfills. Landfills are ugly, and as the name indicates, they use up valuable land.
Even if you don't need the cash from recycling your aluminum cans, somebody else does. You might bring the cans to a church, an animal shelter or another organization that appreciates the donation. You might give the cans to a youngster you know; kids often are looking for ways to generate some money. Do some good with those empty beverage cans and recycle them from now on.