It’s becoming more and more common to see cardboard recycling in Chicago businesses, but do we really know the facts about cardboard recycling and what happens after the recycling process? Here are some facts you may not know about your cardboard recycling.
A Lot Happens After You Put That Box In The Recycling Bin
So, your business has started recycling, good for you! Combined Resources can help you with the “nuts and bolts” part of recycling, but what about impact and the process of recycling? Why is recycling so important and what really happens to our cardboard garbage after we drop it in the bin? Here are some facts and a run-down of what happens to your cardboard.
Facts About Cardboard Recycling
- When you use old cardboard, it takes 30 to 50 percent less energy to recycle the cardboard than it does when you make it from trees.
- Recycling reduces pollution by 95 percent compared to cardboard made with trees. Try this recycling calculator to find your recycling ratio.
- It will extend the life of our landfills exponentially, because 40 percent of the refuse in landfills is cardboard and paper.
- Corrugated cardboard is recycled into cereal boxes, food boxes and back into cardboard.
The Process Doesn’t Stop Here
While these facts are interesting, it doesn’t explain how the cardboard recycling process works. When you participate in cardboard recycling in Chicago, you’re not only extending the life of Illinois’ landfills, but you’re adding to the state’s economy as well. Here is a brief overview of how cardboard recycling works.
How Cardboard Recycling Works
CRI puts out bins, which are collected, sorted and baled. They are then transported to a recycling plant. You can help this process by keeping your cardboard dry and free of dirt and oils. Oily, dirty cardboard can’t be recycled, so you need to find another home for your breakroom pizza boxes.
Once it’s sorted and sent to the paper factory, the paper is mixed with water in a huge blender. The blender mixes the paper into pulp and separates the paper fibers. The blender also de-inks any printed cardboard. The pulp is sent through several screens, which separates our fibers, but also weeds out stray paper clips, staples and such.
The clean pulp is then mixed with a small amount of new wood pulp to make the cardboard stronger. The clean, mixed pulp is then pressed into forms or sheets, and then dried. Voila, new, recycled cardboard is made!
Your Cardboard Isn’t The Only Revitalized Element
This begins the new life of your cardboard box. This isn’t the only thing that begins; a whole new industry has been based around the collection and reprocessing of paper products and other products. This creates jobs in both Illinois and Chicago itself, which in turn puts more money back into the city and state you love. This is big news for business owners, because that means that money is likely to recycle right back into their businesses. It’s a win-win-win situation, for cardboard recycling Chicago workers, your business and for mother Earth.
To learn more about cardboard recycling in your workplace, contact Combined Resources, Inc. at 855-782-8490. Learn more about our cardboard recycling services, here.