Imagine an infinitely recyclable product that performs as well as the alternative, costs less to make, and is unquestionably better for the environment. You would bet on its success, wouldn’t you? – Guardian Sustainable Business writer Marc Gunther, The Guardian, Why Are Major Beverage Companies Refusing to Use a 90% Recycled Can?
…metals, including aluminum, can effectively be recycled indefinitely, without a loss of quality. In fact, aluminum cans have consistently shown the highest value among recycled commodities and remain in high demand. – Former Senior Writer on Environment, Science and Technology, Brian Howard, National Geographic, 5 Recycling Myths Busted
Aluminum recycling provides many environmental, economic and community benefits; it saves energy, time, money and precious natural resources; and it generates jobs and helps to pay for community services that make life better for millions of people. – Writer Larry West, ThoughtCo, The Benefits of Aluminum Recycling
The weight is only marginally heavier than the lightest PET bottles and in fact is lighter than some plastic bottles…By the pallet they actually require less energy to transport than PET bottles, as there are more cans per pallet than PET. This is mainly due to the shape of cans as when transporting on pallets we are ‘shipping’ less air…Along with the benefits already mentioned, they are easier to stack, take up less space, and can be easy to crush when empty, so more cans can be recycled per bin…These kinds of factors along with the fact that the cans are more easily recycled guided us to move away from PET. – Patrick Gee, founder of Llanllyr, Packaging Gateway, Could Recyclability Give Aluminum Bottles the Edge Over Plastic?
Making cans is still less arduous than making glass bottles. Plus, aluminum wins big in shipping: An empty 12-ounce can weighs up to 14 times less than a 12-ounce glass bottle; less weight means less fuel and fewer emissions in transport. And after the drink’s been consumed, aluminum wins again: Recycling ten pounds of aluminum can save 37 pounds of carbon emissions, compared with one pound saved through glass recycling. The verdict: six-pack ahoy! – Rachel Z. Arndt, Writer, Huffpost, Eco Friendly Products: Which Are Worse?
Cans over plastic bottles: This one’s so easy! When given the choice, reach for cans over plastic containers. Aluminum can be infinitely recycled into aluminum, whereas plastic is trickier to recycle and degrades over time (and thus cannot be recycled into plastic. – Ashlee Piper, an Author and Eco-Lifestyle Expert, WISHTV, Tips to Lessen Your Plastic Use, Protect the Environment
There’s one other thing: While prices for many recyclable commodities have fallen, aluminum remains strong. ‘When you buy beer or wine, buy it in a can. – Adam Ortiz, Director of Montgomery County’s Department of Environmental Protection. The Washington Post, Recycling is Good For the Planet. We Need to Get Better At It.
For certain materials, recycling systems are working relatively well. Of all the aluminum ever produced in North America, 75 percent remains in use today. But that’s not the same for plastics. – Frank Pallone (D-NJ), Chair, House Committee on Energy and Commerce during a hearing on the state of recycling in America
“Every year we make 6x more plastic than aluminum…even metals corrode and erode so they would eventually go back to the natural environment, plastic just stays plastic.” – Roland Geyer, Industrial Ecologist from UC Santa Barbara, PBS News Hour, The Plastic Problem
If people stop buying soda in plastic bottles, and instead only buy it in aluminum cans, companies will realize that plastic is not profitable and stop making it. So, a small choice as a consumer can have a large impact over time. – Madhavi Venkatesan, Economist, Northeastern University, What’s the real cost of a bottle of soda (and everything else)?
Metals erode and corrode so they would eventually go back to the natural environment; plastic just stays plastic. – Roland Geyer, an industrial ecologist and a professor at the University of California at Santa Barbara’s Bren School of Environmental Science and Management, PBS Newshour, The Plastic Problem
We found that glass bottles have about a 95% bigger contribution to global warming than aluminium cans. – Ian Williams, Professor of Applied Environmental Science, University of Southampton and Alice Brock, PhD Candidate in Environmental Science, University of Southampton, Study co-authors, The Conversation, Ranked: the environmental impact of five different soft drink containers
The best thing about aluminum is that your recycled soda can can become another soda can in as little as two months. In contrast, other items like plastics can only truly be ‘down-cycled,’ as reworking it causes the quality to degrade. Eventually, all of our plastic ends up discarded, without the possibility of another life. There are lots of ways to recycle your bottles, but have you seen any for thin plastics like cling wrap? – Hayden Sloan, Community Engagement Fellow, Student Conservation Association, The Environmental Impact of Aluminum (And Why it’s Still Better Than Plastic)
For starters, recycling just 1 tonne of aluminium can help to save 9 tonnes of CO2 emissions. This is the equivalent of your average car driving 2800 miles. Imagine how much of a difference to the environment this makes, given how many tonnes of aluminium are recycled each year. – David Bruhl, Aluminum Windows Sydney, Linkedin Pulse, Why Aluminium is the Environmentally Friendly Option
In a joint effort with the US Environmental Protection Agency, the aluminum industry cooperates in the Voluntary Aluminum Industrial Partnership to track, reduce, and report emissions and other environmental impacts related to primary aluminum production. Studies have shown that the global aluminum industry has made progress in reducing emissions of PFCs. – The Environmental Literacy Council, Aluminum
Some recyclables are more valuable than others based on economic markets. For example, instead of buying a beverage in a plastic bottle, opt for one in an aluminum can, because there’s typically a strong market for recycled aluminum, and it’s infinitely recyclable with high environmental savings. – Beth Porter, Climate Campaign Director at Green America and author of Reduce, Reuse, Reimagine: Sorting Out the Recycling System