- Aluminum is made from bauxite, an ore mined from the earth. It doesn’t decompose or break down. When recycled, aluminum is melted down and reshaped into new cans.
- Aluminum can be recycled endlessly.
- Nearly 35% of world demand for aluminum is met with recycled aluminum (secondary aluminum).
- Approximately 75% of all the aluminum ever produced since 1888 is still in use today.
- Recycling aluminum cans saves 95 percent of the energy used to make aluminum cans from virgin ore.
- Aluminum cans are the most recycled and most recyclable beverage container in the world. An awesome 105,784 cans are recycled every minute nationwide.
- Used aluminum cans are recycled and returned to a store shelf as a new can in as few as 60 days.
- Recycled aluminum cans are used again for the production of new cans or for the production of other valuable aluminum products such as airplane parts, building facades and bicycles.
- Beverage containers such as aluminum cans represent less than 20% of the materials collected in curbside recycling programs and they generate up to 50 percent of total scrap value.
- 280 billion (280,000,000,000) aluminum cans are made every year worldwide.
- It's estimated that since 1972 some 18.7 million tons of aluminum has been recycled. These 1,099 billion aluminum cans placed end-to-end could stretch to the moon and back some 174 times.
- Some 105,500 cans are recycled every minute nation-wide (USA).
- The weight of aluminum cans recycled in 2009 was equal to the weight of 11.5 aircraft carriers – 807,860 tons – which is more than the entire U.S. Fleet.
- Around 40 years ago, one pound of aluminum made 21.75 12-ounce cans. By developing new technologies to reduce the can’s weight, the industry now produces an average of 34.35 cans from every pound of aluminum. The weight reduction continues through the use of smaller can ends. The can manufacturing industry once used the “206” end universally, which weighs (including the tab) an average of 8.5 pounds per thousand. Today, the industry has moved towards “204” and “202” ends, which are considerably smaller and use far less material to manufacture. In fact, the “202” end weighs an average of 6.11 pounds per thousand.
- The Adolph Coors Company manufactured the first aluminum beverage can in 1958.
- Most plastic containers are made from polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and high density polyethylene (HDPE), both of which are petroleum based non-renewable resources.
- Recycled bottles are sold to plastic recyclers who reuse the plastic to manufacture new products.
- Recycled PET bottles can be recycled into many different products such as new bottles for beverages, salad dressing and household cleaning products.
- PET can also be recycled into fiberfill for sleeping bags and coats, fabric for clothing, upholstery and carpeting.
- HDPE is downcycled into plastic lumber, tables, roadside curbs, benches, truck cargo liners, trash receptacles, stationery (e.g. rulers) and other durable plastic products and is usually in demand.
- Recycling one ton of plastic bottles saves 7.4 cubic yards of landfill space and 3.8 barrels of oil.
- It takes 5 2-litre plastic PET bottles to make 1 square yard of carpet.
- 50% of all polyester carpet manufactured in the U.S. is made from recycled plastic bottles.
- It takes approximately 53 2-litre PET bottles to make enough fiberfill insulation to fill one adult-sized sleeping bag.
- It takes approximately 12 2-litre PET bottles to make enough fiberfill for one adult ski jacket.
- In 1968, Vittel launched the first plastic bottle made of PVC plastic in France to replace glass bottles.
- Over a ton of natural resources are saved for every ton of glass recycled
- Many glass bottles have been reduced in weight by more than 50% between 1970 and 2000.
- Glass bottles and jars are 100% recyclable and can be recycled endlessly without any loss in purity or quality.
- Glass is manufactured into three primary commodities: highway marking beads, GlassSand™, and new containers
- Recycling just one glass bottle saves enough energy to light a 100-watt light bulb for four hours, power a computer for 30 minutes, or a television for 20 minutes
- In Manitoba, most of the glass is crushed and reused as aggregate for roadbase or water and sewer installations.
- Other secondary uses for recycled glass include: countertops and flooring, landscaping, tile and other decorative items, bead manufacturing (used in reflective paint for highways), brick manufacture, concrete pavements and parking lots, and glass sand for drinking water filtration systems
- Drink boxes (known as “aseptic” containers) and gable top juice and milk cartons (referred together as “polycoat”) are made of up to three material types: paper, an aluminum lining, and a plastic coating.
- Cartons are light-weight and have a great product to package ratio. If you choose a product in a carton, you are taking home an average of 94% product and only 6% packaging.
- 80% of material by weight is recycled in a hydra-pulping process that separates the different material types. Fiber in the cartons is converted into pulp in a hydrapulper (think giant kitchen blender), which in turn is made into useful products.
- Aseptic/Polycoat beverage containers are baled and sold to paper recyclers for the manufacturing of pulp suitable for products like cardboard boxes and tissue paper.
- Recycling one ton of Aseptic/Polycoat beverage containers can save about 9 cubic yards of space in a landfill and can save around 46 gallons of oil.
- Demand for recycled paper decreases the strain on natural resources and provides a market for recycled beverage cartons.
- Tetra Pak was created in 1951 as a subsidiary to Åkerlund & Rausing, a food carton company. Tetra-Pak is the leading manufacturer of beverage and food carton packaging.
- In 2010, 30 billion used Tetra Pak carton packages were recycled, a doubling since 2002.