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environmental facts

(although this focuses on the USA, mainly New York, it is similar to problems everywhere)

...by 2005, when it reaches capacity, the Fresh Kills Landfill on Staten Island(New York) will be the tallest peak on the East Coast between Maine and Florida.
...New York City produces four pounds of waste per person per day-more than any other city in the world.
...the USA recycles only 11% of its total waste compared to Japan, which recycles 50%.
...sixty-five percent of our trash goes to landfills, half of which will close in five years.
...we use an estimated 300 million rolls of fax paper each year-enough to go from the Earth to the moon 26 times.
...USA businesses buy an estimated 5 billion cubic feet of Polystyrene foam "peanuts" a year. that is enough to fill the Empire Sate building more than 135 times.
...an estimated 16 billion laser printer cartridges are used every year. only about 1.5 million of them are recycled.
...the USA produces 70% of the world's solid waste.
...forty percent of New York City's garbage consists of package materials.

what you can do:

...reuse packing materials or use old newspapers in place of polystyrene Peanuts.
...speak to your distributor or building office to find out if you can recycle laser printer cartridges.
...avoid unnecessary waste by using mugs, plates, metal utensils, dishtowels, in place of disposable paper or plastic.
...reuse clips, binders, file folders and save $$$$$.


paper

...paper and paperboard constitute 36% of the total amount of solid waste produced.
...paper can be recycled for about four times before it loses its tensile strength.
...U.S. businesses throw away 21 million tons of paper every year-the equivalent of 175 pounds per average office worker.
...if each copier in the U.S. made five fewer copies every day, we could save up to 1.4 million trees per year.
...making new paper from old paper uses up to 55% less energy than making paper from trees, and creates much less air and water pollution.
...every year, Americans throw away enough office paper to build a wall 12 feet high, stretching from LA, California, to New York City.
...if only 100,000 people stopped their junk mail, we could save about 150,000 trees every year.
...if we all recycled our Sunday papers, we could save over 500,000 trees EACH WEEK.
...seventy percent of the 62.5 million newspapers that will be printed today, will be thrown away.

what you can do:

...REDUCE-use double sided photocopies whenever possible.
...REUSE-print drafts and internal copies on clean side of used paper.
...RECYCLE-recycle white office paper and newspaper/magazines in designated recycling bins-if your office does not recycle, you can be the one to start. purchase recycled paper for all office needs.
...delete your names from mailing list-junk mail-by calling the company.


aluminum/glass/plastic


...it takes 19 times as much energy to manufacture an alluminum can from raw ore than from recycled aluminum.
...the average aluminum can goes from the supermarket shelf to scrap and back to the shelf in 42 days.
...the average American uses about 42 pounds of aluminum each year, while the average Chinese or Mexican uses less thn two pounds.
...every year we throw out 28 billion glass bottles and jars-enough to fill New York's twin towers every two weeks.
...Americans go through 2.5 million plastic bottles every hour and throw away 55 billion cans each year.

what you can do:

...in 1991 the U.S. recycled 56.8 billion cans.
...contribute to the rising recycling rates by placing rinsed beverage containers in the designated recycling receptacle.
...buy products in reusable, refillable, or recyclable containers.


the council on the environment: the council on the environment of New York City. information printed here is derived from this site.