Economics says recycling is wrong – Mr Terry

Disclaimer: these are not my opinions on recycling I am just expressing an argument against recycling based on common economic analysis to provoke thought and debate – Chris Terry

There is a growing feeling that everything that can be recycled should be recycled and that the long term goal should be zero waste – this is wrong!

There are two generally two arguments in favour of recycling.  The first is that these resources are too valuable to throw away!  In almost all cases, this argument is false, if they were too valuable to throw away, recycling would occur automatically without people having to be forced to do so by local authority regulation.  The second is that recycling is cheaper than putting the waste in landfill.  Empirically, recycling is almost always substantially more expensive than disposing of it in landfill.

To explain let us look at the recycling of glass:


Glass is heavy, that means it is expensive to transport and there is a significant problem and thus cost associated with the glass breaking and cutting workers. Glass is harmless in landfill and breaks down into something very like the sand it came from.

The product that glass can be ground into is called cullet, and it really is not at all valuable, remember that price is a good measure of the usefulness and economic value of something. Green glass cullet sold for between £5 and £15 per ton in 2015 and would cost about 37p per mile to transport!  Mixed cullet, is even less valuable and is almost useless in terms of re-use in forming new glass, turning a dull black when used and nobody wants dull black glass! The sorting needed to avoid this is very time consuming and the cost involved far outweighs the commercial value of the single colour cullet. Those who argue for recycling always seem to forget to take account of the time involved in recycling and the fact that any time comes at a cost.

The alternative to recycling glass is to make new glass. It is much more expensive to convert a ton of cullet in to useable glass than it is to make the same quantity of new glass. That means that recycling, when you add on the fuel costs and pollution impact of collecting small quantities of recycled glass from houses and bottle banks, actually uses more energy, and wastes more resources, than making new glass! It is economically inefficient and society would be better off if it were not recycled.


Are there economic arguments against this analysis, perhaps………..?

Leave a Reply

r1 performance male enhancement review testosterone supplements increase sex drive foods to cure premature ejaculation in nigeria is slow fusion male enhancement real phoenix male enhancement reviews herbal feminizer herbal feminizer sex change pills customer reviews extenze maximum strength male enhancement legal lean male enhancement black stone male enhancer viagra pills per refill do male libido booster pills work sex boosting pills in usa fresh tyme keto liquid pills heart murmur diet pills ketosium xs acv gummies drinking while taking wegovy lazy ways to lose weight free sharps container wegovy paleo diet to lose weight fast two types of diet pills how much weight can you lose with gastric sleeve impact keto acv gummies how much cbd should i take for inflammation and pain thc cbd gummies muker hemp gummies cbd gummies for mental clarity 100mg of thc gummy mmj cbd infused products article is cbd or thc better for anxiety buzzfeed chronic pain cbd 50mg cbd gummies for sleep hardcore cbd gummies review cbd gummies romania harmony cbd focus gummies what cbd skin products natures tru cbd gummies reviews cbd and heart pain cbd gummies green roads review bee bee cbd gummies cbd usa topical pain

do cbd gummies help with erectile dysfunction is cbd oil for painful menopause sex effective stiff x male enhancement lotion herbal male enhancement pills nz supplement most like viagra top 10 coq10 supplement brands for erectile dysfunction real results from penis enlargement pills cheap erection pills uk male enhancement penis proceudre do water pills affect erection male enhancement pills 34yr old bio science male enhancement gummies alpha male enhancement capsules shogun x male enhancement review garlic to cure erectile dysfunction dominx male enhancement support roman red erectile dysfunction pills ultra boost juice male enhancement sexual wellness supplements for men dr oz shark tank male enhancementoros cbd gummies ingredients could cbd help you sleep better good recipe for cannabis gummies max relief cbd gummy bears balance cbd products cbd gummies with melatonin reviews liquid gold cbd sour gummies delta 8 thc sleep gummies how long for thc gummies to wear off cbd edibles for sleep usa best cbd or thc for pain how long do the effects of cbd gummy last cbd gummies purchase online what are eagle hemp cbd gummies twin elements cbd gummies for sale platinum cbd gummy apple rings how many thc gummies to get high yummies thc gummies flying with cannabis gummies benefits to cbd gummies