Last fall CNBC aired “Trash Inc: The Secret Life of Trash” (which can be seen below). On occasion they re-air the exposĂŠ. First there are some overall facts to keep in mind. According to the program, there are approximately 2,300 landfills in the United States and it is a $52 billion – that’s billion with a “B” – dollar a year industry. This is the third (and final) set of Five Friday Facts from this data. Here are links to the first and second sets of facts.
These facts come from the show:
- Energy generated from waste has saved 150 million barrels of oil over the past 30 years
- About 80% of what’s thrown away is recyclable, but only 28% is recycled
- Foss manufacturing’s executive VP of sales estimates that only 5% of fabrics are from post consumer recycled resins (70% of the post consumer plastic comes from outside the US)
- 51 billion bottles a year are consumed in the US, with only 22% being recycled
- The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is estimated to be twice the size of the continental US weighing 3.5 million tons; one of five patches across the oceans
Image source: Metropolitan Museum of Art