Glass has been around for centuries in many forms. Whether it is the cup that holds the water that quenches your thirst or the windows that protect you from the outside world, glass is everywhere. The process of recycling glass is so efficient that the jar you place in the bottle bank can potentially be back on the supermarket shelves within a span of 70 days.
Glass is one of the most useful materials in the world. It is also 100% recyclable because it is made from three different natural materials such as silica sand (silicon dioxide), soda ash (sodium carbonate), and limestone (calcium carbonate). Each time a new glass product is made, raw materials from the Earth are extracted and utilized, and high amounts of energy are required to melt and mix the materials together.
However, glass has some very special properties; it is non-toxic, inert, and can be recycled easily and infinitely without losing any of its characteristics. Therefore, for every piece of glass that is recycled, precious amounts of the earth’s raw materials are preserved and large amounts of energy and water are saved. Therefore, lesser carbon dioxide, which is a damaging greenhouse gas contributing to global warming and climate change, is released into the atmosphere.
Glass that has food or liquid residue should be rinsed out prior to recycling. This helps to reduce smells, mold, flies, and pests during storage at home and at the recycling site.
Upon realising the environmental, economic and health related benefits of recycling glass products, EEG set up its Glass Collection Campaign in 2005. The campaign has been highly successful since its inception and has contributed to the recycling of 2,516,635 kg of glass until the end of May 2021.