recycling symbolIt’s easy to feel good about the impact recycling has on the environment, from decreasing landfill mass to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. But while everyone knows the eco-friendly benefits of the three R’s, did you know that recycling helps the economy, too? Recycling is responsible for one of every three green jobs in the U.S. — that’s more than 3.1 million jobs, generating more than $100 billion in revenue each year.

 

To put that in perspective, data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency indicates that one job is created for every 10,000 tons of waste that’s dumped into a landfill. In contrast, recycling the same amount of waste creates 10 jobs in recycling. The number of jobs created increases seven-fold if that material is recycled, then refurbished or reused.

 

In fact, data indicates that recycling will create more than 1.5 million jobs by 2030. Here are just a few of the ways that jobs in recycling impact the environment and the economy — and contribute to the greater good.

Second (or Third) Life

One of the fastest growing niches in the industry- electronics recycling- is booming. From laptops to mobile phones, electronic equipment recycling is growing at an exponential rate — and that means more jobs in recycling.

 

Case in point: In 2002, about 600,000 tons of electronics were recycled. By 2010, that number grew to 3.5 million tons, a 500% increase. As impressive as those numbers may be, as of 2011, the recycle rate was still at just 24.9%, indicating a strong potential for job growth in the electronics recycling industry.

 

And commercial and personal reliance on electronics isn’t likely to go away anytime soon; if anything, it’ll increase, keeping this vibrant market going strong. The employment potential is two-fold: In most cases, electronics less than six years old can be partially recycled or refurbished, then resold, often to consumers in less-industrialized countries. On the other hand, equipment more than six years old is recycled down into its basic components, such as metal and plastic, before being sold to manufacturers.

Breaking it Down

Speaking of breaking down materials, that’s where much of the potential for recycling industry job growth lies. The business of taking materials — like metals, glass, textiles, plastics and even food byproducts such as oil — down to their basic components is thriving, and the demand for these raw materials and end products is growing, too.

 

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor, the most common recycling jobs fall into the following categories:

  • Drivers
  • Sorters
  • Technicians
  • Mechanics
  • Facility and Route Managers
  • Sales Representatives

 

As the equipment used to break down materials becomes more technologically sophisticated, expect this industry to keep growing — and to keep creating jobs in recycling that benefit both the economy and the earth.

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Related GK News

ISRI Booth 2019

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: General Kinematics Attends ISRI 2019

For Immediate Release General Kinematics                                                                                Marketing Dept.: (815) 444-3521 marketing@generalkinematics.com     FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: GENERAL KINEMATICS ATTENDS ISRI 2019     Beginning April 8th in Los Angeles, California thousands of attendees and hundreds of exhibitors convened to discuss the latest innovations in scrap recycling technology at ISRI 2019.   Attending this year’s event, […]

Read More
GK at CastExpo 2019

GK at CastExpo 2019: Pre-Show Announcement

CastExpo 2019 is quickly approaching! From April 27-30, the General Kinematics team will be at the CastExpo tradeshow in Atlanta, Georgia. It’s the largest North American expo for metalcasting suppliers, buyers, and metalcasters. CastExpo will have tech demos, full-scale exhibits, keynote speakers, thousands of attendees, and more. General Kinematics will be on site to meet […]

Read More
all about biomass equipment by GK

All About BioMass Equipment

Processing biomass incorporates various types of materials like wood, wood pellets, grass, yard waste farm waste, and more. Because of this, biomass processing equipment is designed to handle specific processes, including vibratory screening, density separation, metering, or material drying. When the right biomass equipment is chosen, processes can be completed thoroughly and efficiently, cutting down […]

Read More