Recycle & Reuse – Can We Do A Little More To Reuse Our Waste?

Recycling is the way to go now – we Irish have been doing it now for a number of years and its a great way of helping to to keep our landfills from been swamped with unnecessary rubbish. Most Cities and towns in and around Dublin and Ireland have sites where one can bring items they want to recycle. Not only can we recycle paper we can now recycle textiles and certain types of glass. Most major shopping centers have bins on site (normally in their car parks) so we can recycle whatever we are putting into the bins. There are also a wide range of charities that have textiles bins so you can donate any old clothes or textiles that they can raise cash on them for their charity, and at the same time recycle and or reuse the clothes.

In Ireland today we are all heading in the right direction when it comes to recycling but we can do a little better, here is a break down what we can do by not throwing out our rubbish in a black bag.

Paper & Cardboard.

Paper and cardboard can account up to 23.7% of rubbish in a black bag.

Each tonne of recycled paper can save 17 trees from been cut down.

One single piece of office grade paper can be recycled up to seven times throughout its time.


Plastic can account up to 4.12% of rubbish in a black bag.

Plastic is made of crude oil, and once a plastic bag hits a landslide it can take up to a staggering 500 years for it to break down and dissolve away.


Glass can account for 8. % of rubbish in a black bin bag.

By recycling one standard glass jar you can save enough power to keep a bulb lighting for one hour or keep a TV set powered for 15 minutes.

By recycling glass we save at least 40% on energy, that we would use if we were making glass from raw new materials.

Steel & Tin.

Steel can account for 1.5% of rubbish in a black bag.

Steel can be recycled without losing any of its strength in quality.

Tin cans can be recycled to make more tin can’s, or car parts for engines, or even end up been a car key itself.

You see if we all take something from the above list, and recycled it rather than bin it we would all be doing something wonderful. I am a big believer in recycling and I recycle at least two bags of goods each week. By recycling goods we are giving them another chance to be reused.

Years ago people didn’t have much money in this country, and even without realising it, they all recycled, and reused, almost everything. Today we are in a better situation but we must try and follow their lead, and stop sending rubbish to any landfills.

As I said I recycle most of the items I no longer need. I start by washing out everything that I am finished with. The reason I wash them out, is, come recycling day, when I go down to my local recycling bin I can take them out of the bags without them been all sticky and covered with food, etc. Also by washing them you prevent wild animals from pulling them around your backyard. If they can’t smell anything they won’t pull at the bags. I don’t have a big yard and I am on the ground level.

After I separate my rubbish I am left with about 1% of rubbish that I send to the landfill, and that is usually used t-bags, veg peelings, etc., as I have no way of getting rid of them and I do not have a compost pot. So my rubbish that goes out to be collected by the bin men is only once every 4 weeks, and I only have to buy 1 sticker every month. Calculate that over 12 months, and for the whole year I only send out just 12 bags. Without me recycling I would be putting out at least two bags a week – calculate that on a four week basis is at least 8 bags per month, then calculate that by 12 months and you’re looking at 96 bags a year. To put a figure of cash on binning all that waste… I would be looking at about €350 per year. Instead I now pay €44.00, which is a saving of €302.00 per year.

So by recycling you not only help to free up our landfills, you can also save cash too. So the next time you are going to throw away anything, think about it. Are you throwing away rubbish or cash?

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