18.03.2021 - Sustainability

Global Recycling Day

A second life for our waste

Year after year, our planet provides precious raw materials – but at some point, supplies will be exhausted. Recycling, however, can conserve resources. Global Recycling Day on 18 March aims to raise awareness for this fact. 

Buy, use, throw away? Things cannot continue this way. After all, it means that many materials which could actually still be recycled end up in a landfill. As “secondary raw materials”, they can still be of good use: for example, waste glass, which saves energy in the production of new glass. And then, of course, there is the raw material of waste paper: 17 million tonnes are recycled in Germany every year. It is turned into newspapers, printer paper and hygiene paper, as is done at WEPA.

However, electrical appliances, cars and batteries also contain numerous valuable materials that can be recycled. The initiators of Global Recycling Day employ the term “seventh resource” to mean recyclable materials on which practically our entire existence is based, in addition to the classic six resources of water, air, natural gas, oil, minerals and coal. 

Figures clearly demonstrate that the “seventh resource” deserves this equal treatment: Even today, 40% of all raw materials worldwide are already recycled. Every year, this spares the environment 700 million tonnes of CO2 emissions. This sum offsets the entire global air traffic of one year.

Last but not least, recycling is also an economic factor: The industry employs 1.6 million people worldwide, 35,000 of them in Germany. At WEPA, we are proud to be part of this great and important movement – not only on 18 March, but every single day.
 

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