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Styrene is classified as a possible human carcinogen by the Environmental Protection Agency and by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. Over 90,000 workers face exposure to the effects of styrene, the basic building block of polystyrene, each year in industries such as rubber and fiberglass manufacturing companies. Always remember to PRECYCLE, reduce waste at the waste source  and choose environmentally friendly products. Once in the landfill, it does not decompose quickly. Check with local packaging stores in your area; most of them will accept Styrofoam pellets for reuse. If used properly, it is an economical, sanitary product, with low environmental risks. greenmaxpl. Mark Little began his professional writing career in 2009 with his work appearing on various websites. Our model estimates the total hidden costs of Styrofoam (for the current production output of 3 million tons) at $7 billion annually. That's a lot of containers - make sure they're recycled! Please enable JavaScript in your browser for a better user experience. In 2018, plastics generation was 35.7 million tons in the United States, which was 12.2 … Styrofoam products have the tendency of easily breaking apart into small pieces making it a choke hazard to animals. Some businesses collect  Styrofoam for reuse and recycling. Some companies are also getting with the program. That’s a lot of avoidable waste. The Department of Sanitation concluded that expanded polystyrene cannot be recycled, despite the fact that many of the containers display the recycling symbol.. Plus, Styrofoam … The Bantar Gebang dump in Bekasi, Indonesia . In general, the … According to The California Department of Conservation, the costs of recycling styrofoam amounts to $3000 per single ton. Styrofoam is non-biodegradable and non-recyclable. NotesDrop-off: food service foam and packaging products. Every day, approximately 1,369 tons of Styrofoam is buried into U.S. landfills. In our individual efforts to reach Zero Waste, many of us try to avoid plastic foam (also known as Styrofoam) packaging. Food service containers must be clean or rinsed. However, used improperly, it can quickly become an unsightly environmental nuisance and does have potential health risks. By volume, Styrofoam products fill up 25 to 30 percent of landfill space around the world. But even for conscientious consumers, sometimes Styrofoam … Styrene leaches into foods and drinks served in Styrofoam containers, and according to the Earth Resource Foundation, the manufacture of Styrofoam releases large amounts of ozone into the atmosphere, causing respiratory and environmental issues. Styrofoam is a Dow Chemical Company trademark for a specific type of extruded polystyrene (EPS) foam used only for art supplies and insulation. Recycling Styrofoam Confirm you have plain white Styrofoam. This adds up to about a ton of trash per person every year that eventually ends up in a landfill. We choose egg cartons made of hard plastic or cardboard or take a reusable coffee cup rather than grabbing a disposable Styrofoam cup. Americans throw away 25,000,000,000 Styrofoam coffee cups every year. Buy your eggs packaged in recycled paper cartons or recyclable material. According to the EPA, Americans trash approximately 25 billion Styrofoam cups and take-out containers every year. Recycled paper products are the best alternative, according to Earth Resource Foundation. Every year Americans waste enough polystyrene that it could circle the Earth 426 times. Due to the environmental impact, many cities and countries have implemented a banned on the commercial use of Styrofoam, including California; Seattle, Washington; Manila, Philippines; Toronto, Canada; Paris, France; Portland Oregon; and Taiwan). Polystyrene is manufactured with HCFC-22, a green house gas that affects the ozone layer, and petroleum, a non-sustainable and highly … The Ocean Protection Council estimates costs to clean up marine debris are close to $1 billion annually. University of Washington: Amazing Facts about Recycling, A Recycling Revolution: Aluminum Recycling Facts. Compared to Styrofoam, these two new eco-friendly alternatives help reduce pollution and conserve landfill airspace. Additionally, Styrofoam harms marine life. This figure includes 63 million pounds of post-consumer packaging and 55.7 million pounds of post-industrial recovery. Use compostable paper or reusable dinnerware. Take your unwanted packaging pellets/peanuts to a local packing and shipping store for reuse. When the bottom li… A recent report from the Canadian Chamber of Commerce found that, in 2012, 80 per cent of styrofoam waste in Canada, more than 6,500 tonnes, ended up … Statistics The Earth Resource Foundation reports that Styrofoam manufacturers were the fifth largest producer of toxic waste in 1986. 3 million tons of Styrofoam are produced in the USA annually, 80% of which is destined for the trash. Chronic exposure affects the nervous system, causing symptoms like depression, headache, fatigue and weakness, and minor effects on kidney function and blood. Styrofoam can be destroyed if it is incinerated at extremely high temperatures, creating only a small amount of water and carbon as by products. Styrofoam is a trademark named for a chemical compound called polystyrene. Receives around 192,000 tonnes of e-waste annually; Pollutes soil, air and water and causes serious health threats for the 10,000 people making a living from sorting and recycling. Because of the amount of air in its structure, Styrofoam is considered to be unsinkable and capable of maintaining its form. The fact that Styrofoam is non-biodegradable adds to the ecological impact. And keep in mind that the US alone makes around 3 million tons of styrofoam per year. A typical family consumes 182 gallons of soda, 29 gallons of juice, 104 gallons of milk, and 26 gallons of bottled water a year. On average, each one of us puts out about 5 pounds of trash a day. And although it only makes up roughly 2% of waste by weight, it takes up a whopping 30% in volume of overall solid waste, primarily due to its widespread use in product packaging. Make sure foam has the #6 chasing arrow symbol and place foam in clear sealed bags. ... Food waste is a growing, worldwide problem. Researchers believe this may help with plastic waste. Landfills are filling up at a record rate and Styrofoam is one reason. According to Washington University, Styrofoam takes 500 years to decompose; it cannot be recycled, so the Styrofoam cups dumped in landfills are there to stay. It takes approximately 201 tons worth of aluminum cans to make a Boeing 747. However, like most options in life, trade-offs exist and disposable doesn’t win in every comparison versus “real”, reusable foodware. Health effects from exposure to styrene are irritation of the skin, eyes and respiratory tract and gastrointestinal problems. Advantages of Using Foamed … ... Over 40% of all U.S. municipal solid waste consists of paper and paperboard products. Paper recycling also saves trees and contributes to an overall savings when compared to Styrofoam. Typically, those undertaking Styrofoam recycling have done so by operating at a loss — spending around $1,000 to recoup $200 worth of Styrofoam. Landfills are quickly filling up and Styrofoam is an active contributor occupying more space than other waste. Easily recycled, paper is good for shipping and product packaging. The primary data source on the generation of plastics is the American Chemistry Council. According to the Alliance of Foam Packaging Recyclers, more than 118 million pounds of EPS were recycled during the calendar year 2016. Over 90,000 workers face exposure to the effects of styrene, the material in Styrofoam, each year in industries such as rubber and fiberglass manufacturing companies. Paper products are biodegradable and non-toxic to the environment. Instead of cleaning up, just toss out paper plates, foam cups and plastic cutlery. High density polyethylene (HDPE) natural bottles were recycled at a rate of 30.3 percent in 2015 and 31.2 percent in 2017. Since "extruded polystyrene foam" is a little wordy, we'll call it EPS or polystyrene in this article. Learn more: From the land to the sea – How what we throw away ends up in the ocean That single-use Styrofoam cup doesn't just go away after you toss it in the bin. EPA measures the generation, recycling, composting, combustion with energy recovery and landfilling of plastic materials in municipal solid waste. Well, Americans throw away millions of polystyrene cups annually … and that’s not including all of the other EPS waste we use throughout the day. One common estimate is that styrofoam can take up 30 percent of the space in some landfills. Styrofoam is a lot like a plastic bag: it can sit in landfills for centuries, and it’s toxic when burned. The Earth Resource Foundation reports that Styrofoam manufacturers were the fifth largest producer of toxic waste in 1986. Styrofoam is a major environmental problem. No straws, lids, plastic wrap or trash. Five percent of the world's population generate 40 percent of the world's trash. 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Over half of the world’s plastic thrown out in 2015 was plastic packaging. In 1986, Styrofoam manufacturers were the 5th largest producer of toxic waste. He is certified as a sports nutritionist by the International Fitness Association. A Recycling Revolution reports that packaging material makes up one-third of an average dump. Call to schedule large deliveries. May 19, 2020 Log in to Reply. Styrofoam does not degrade or break down over time. Mealworms have microgramisms in their gut that can biodegrade Styrofoam. Out of every $10 spent buying things, $1 (10%) goes for packaging that is thrown away. One tree yields about 700 paper grocery bags, which will be consumed in less than 1 hour by a supermarket. Every day, approximately 1,369 tons of Styrofoam is buried into U.S. landfills. The ubiquitous single-use plastic takes up 30% of landfill space- about 2.5 million tons or so of Styrofoam goes to the landfill every single year. Little graduated from Texas Chiropractic College with a Doctor of Chiropractic degree. According to the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, plastic debris, which includes Styrofoam products, kills an estimated 100,000 marine mammals annually. Styrofoam can harm animals that scavenge food from landfills. Despite regulations across Canada encouraging the collection and recycling of Styrofoam, 80 per cent of it ends up in Canada’s landfills and environment. © 2021 Collier County, FL. The use of Styrofoam or other foamed polystyrene products is a personal choice. I just wanted to say that there is a brand new Recycling Product called a Styrofoam Densifier which melts the Styrofoam in a ratio of 90:1 into a “rope-patty.” The Styrofoam is then bought back by the company that manufactures the densifiers, and the “recycled” styrofoam is transformed into eye-glass and … By volume, Styrofoam products fill up 25 to 30 percent of landfill space around the … As per conservative estimates, hundreds of thousands of tons of waste polystyrene is produced in the Middle East and sent to landfills each year. Take a look at the full impact of styrofoam in the infographic below from Green Cell Foam. We use over 80,000,000,000 aluminum soda cans every year. The solution to the Styrofoam problem is finding and using alternative materials. Styrofoam containers are known as polystyrene (PS) containers. It is really useful to recycle foam waste with the help of popular foam recycling densifier, estimated to have more than 40-90 times reduction ratio, as for the densified eps ingots ,can be sold back to end-users to make money. Compostable food service packaging is very trendy right now as an “ecologically correct” option. The U.S. is the biggest trash producer in the world, filling America's landfills at an alarming rate. Styrofoam has the potential to affect the entire ecological system of this planet. But across the country, plastic foam bans have passed in more than 200 cities and other communities, from Portland, Ore., to Portland, Maine. Polystyrene is a petroleum-based plastic made from styrene monomers. Landfills are quickly filling up and Styrofoam is an active contributor occupying more space than other waste. Based on different internet resources, every single ton of Styrofoam that we do not use and therefore don't need to produce can save about 12 trees, 1,087 lbs of solid waste, 1,560 kW of energy, 1,196 gal of water, 1,976 lbs of greenhouse gases, 3 yd3 landfill space and 390 gal oil. Styrofoam is a major environmental problem. This Plastic Film Recycling (PFR) and Collection System blog is created to inform industry of an enhanced film, shrink wrap, plastic bubble wrap, styrofoam collection system that effectively aids your organization in the collection of these bulky waste streams. Recycling 14 trees worth of paper reduces air pollutants by 165,142 tons. According to a 2004 study by the California Integrated Waste Management Board, of the 377,580 tons of polystyrene produced in the state, only 0.8% is recycled. The DOW Chemical Company is the owner of several registrations for the trademark Styrofoam® which is used on Dow’s plastic foam insulation and construction products for use in residential, commercial, and … A plastic or styrofoam cup used for a few minutes takes approximately 400 years to decompose. Copyright 2021 Leaf Group Ltd. / Leaf Group Media, All Rights Reserved. The packaging and food industries  have begun  introducing environmental friendly packaging alternatives to the market, such as air cushions and biodegradable food packaging. Another method to reduce the use of Styrofoam is choosing eco-friendly alternative products instead. Of course, some fraction of all discarded styrofoam … The Earth Resource Foundation reports that Styrofoam manufacturers were the fifth largest producer of toxic waste in 1986. This strategy may work in the short term for not-for-profit organizations like municipal recycling facilities, but getting businesses on board has always been a hard sell. 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