Why should glass be recycled?

Glass is made by melting together silica sand the main ingredient and combining soda ash and limestone in a furnace at very high temperatures.

Glass is 100% refillable, reusable and recyclable

Recycle glass containers, the crushed glass cullet can be used for:

  • blast abrasive, water filtration, bricks, fiberglass, aggregates, asphalt and reflective paints etc;
  • re-melting new glass containers, flat glass and other creative products.

Glass recycling conserves energy and environment

Every tonne of recycled glass used preserves 1.2 tonnes of raw materials. Re-melting cullet for new containers, energy is greatly reduced. 315 kg of CO2 would be saved per tonne of recycled glass.

Recycle one glass container; we’ll save energy to power

  • 60 watt light bulb burning for 100 minutes
  • computer for 25 minutes
  • washing machine for 10 minutes

Source: British Glass, http://www.britglass.org.uk/Files/Recycling/GlassRecCounts.pdf
Life Cycle Analysis: Glass Recycling. British Glass
The Best Environmental Use. British Glass

HK low recovery rate

In 2008, HK recovered about 1% of waste glass bottles while Hongkongers dispose about 300 tonne of waste glass in the landfills every day. The recovery figure turned better in 2009 reached 2.6% but HK still far behind Mainland and Taiwan.

Waste glass is expected to increase corresponding to the rapid growth of wine consumption, predictably 32% on rise in 2012 in consonance with alcohol tariff lift in 2008 and HK regional wine hub promotion. It implies more glass bottles will be dumped. 5 problems would be resulted:

  1. Landfills get full faster;
  2. Increasing cost of glass disposal;
  3. Quarries and other raw materials are further exploited;
  4. Energy inefficient;
  5. Global warming.

Source: Monitoring of Solid Waste in Hong Kong. HKSAR Environmental Protection Department: 2008 & 2009

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