The importance of polystyrene recycling cannot be underscored enough today. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), an estimated 25 billion cups that contain this Dow Jones created chemical foam are tossed in landfills each year as opposed to being recycled. One key reason is because many municipalities and regions lack the recycling facilities to properly process and renew this recyclable material. As a result, the foam cups and other foam products created from this chemical formula often end up in landfills, on the sides of roads, in the ocean or littering our cities and parks. There are a number of common myths about recycling this foam that will be debunked in this article to better help you understand the associated factoids and real truths.
One myth, and a rather common one at that, is that polystyrene products actually are broken down into smaller elements that can poison or harm marine life or wildlife. However, up until now there has been no consistent research conducted that proves that these elements harm our wildlife or kill marine life and animals.
Another myth that is rather common is that foam is not able to be recycled. This myth is prevalent mostly because there are many places in the world where the facilities and equipment required to recycle foam are not yet in place, therefore making it impossible to recycle foam in these regions. As a matter of fact, foam can almost always be recycled. The foam can be re-purposed to be used as insulation, in popular adhesives, for plastic lumber like PVC, and in a number of other environmentally beneficial and reusable methods.
Small businesses have often veered away from recycling foam because they adhere to the myth that it would be impossible for them to get on board the green bandwagon, mostly attributed to the cost of recycling foam. A number of recycling entities offer bins that are collected weekly, which go directly to the appropriate recycling centers to reuse this foam. It’s really just a matter of small businesses having the foresight and innovation to contact these entities and procure a lasting relationship with them for recycling.
A rather common myth that you might hear about is that there are not any recycling centers that specialize in foam re-purposing. As a matter of fact, numerous companies maintain recycling centers that are spatially positioned all across the North American continent, serving Canada, the U.S. and Mexico with regional collection centers and warehouses.
Contrary to popular belief, foam is not more harmful and filling in landfills than paper. It’s actually quite the opposite. The foam products that are used in food services industries, for example, such as foam insulated cups, comprise less than 1 percent of all landfill constituents. In fact, many times landfills contain more paper cups than they do foam cups, mostly because people think that paper is better for the environment.
Hopefully these myths being debunked helped to open your eyes to the benefits of polystyrene recycling. As technology progresses, more centers and processes should serve to further revolutionize this industry. You can get on board by checking with your local recycling center to see if they offer foam reprocessing services.
Author Bio: Sarah Parkar is an internet marketer as well as a freelance writer. She is passionate about her work and has experience writing for a broad spectrum of topics. Parker continuously educates herself on the evolving practices of internet marketing, which is reflected in all her work. Her recent writings include facts about Polystyrene Recycling. Follow her on Twitter/Sarah_Parkar.