Glass waste is dangerous garbage and knowing how to dispose of it is a critical step towards ensuring both humans and environmental safety. However, many people have found themselves in a dilemma on how to discard this dangerous waste safely. Should they throw it in the garbage? Or is it safer to take the glassware for recycling? Here is a step-by-step guide of how to dispose of glass waste.
1. Collect your glass wastes
Suppose you’ve got many types of glass waste to dispose of. You could have a broken mirror, window or glass furniture (like modern tables). You’ll have to collect them for proper storage.
2. Separate your glass wastes
Mirrors and window panes are treated with chemicals; thus, they have a different melting point from glass bottles. Therefore, it's vital to separate them before taking them for recycling.
Besides, some glass recyclers require you to separate your glass waste by colour. Single stream recyclers will allow you to combine all the glass products into one recycling bin. Please contact your recycler to learn more about their glass recycling policy.
3. Clean it before recycling
Many glass recycling haulers will require you to clean your glass before placing it into the bin. If your glass contains residue such as sugar, food, and beverages, its stickiness can attract bugs.
4. Handle it carefully to prevent breakage
Glass waste recyclers can recycle broken glass. However, it's hard to use it to make a new glass bottle. While broken glass can still be used to make a tile or fiberglass, it's crucial to maintain your glass's integrity.
Besides, a broken glass can cause injuries to the handler. Therefore, avoid breaking the glass.
5. Recycling glass
Glass containers and jars are recyclable, and you may be tempted to think that broken glass must be recyclable too.
Glass waste is generally non-recyclable. Before taking your broken glass to a recycling centre in your region, check with your local council's rules and regulations about recycling glass waste. Glass recycling may be allowed in one municipality and prohibited in another- for various reasons.
EPA reports show that the US generated approximately 11.5 million tons of glass waste in 2011. However, only 28% of it was recycled. Where did the rest go? The most significant percentage was dumped in landfills, which may explain why landfill spaces are rapidly reducing every year.
Recycling glass is generally hard, but that doesn't make it impossible. In countries where human and environmental safety is a noble concern, a majority of the recycled glass is used to make new items like glass containers, jars, insulation, countertops, and kitchen floor tiles.
If you're considering recycling your glass, the following tips will help you do it right.
Alternative disposal for glass waste
Some municipalities don't allow glass recycling. Therefore, you'll have to opt for other ways to dispose of your glass. The following is a step-by-step guide on how to dispose of broken glass safely:
Step1. Place the broken glass onto a cloth. Wrap it securely.
Step2. If the glass pieces are large, break them into finer fragments.
Step3. Put the cloth into a box, close it, and seal it with tape.
Step4. Label the box "DANGER. BROKEN GLASS."
Step5. Place the box beside your garbage awaiting collection.
Recycling is the best efficient way of disposing of glass waste. In case it's not allowed in your area, ensure that you check with your authority to see how they would like you to dispose of broken glass.