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Clear-Cut Plan for the Glass Industry

Post Time:Mar 25,2009Classify:Industry NewsView:367

A December article in the The New York Times about the collapse of prices for recycled goods has generated buzz in the recycling community. The article outlined the reasons for the diminishing market for recycled materials such as cardboard, plastic, newspaper and metals. However, the article failed to mention glass.

In response, the Glass Packaging Institute (GPI) wrote a letter-to-the-editor, pointing out that the glass packaging industry is “aggressively moving forward with its plans to make all containers out of 50 percent or more recycled material by the year 2013.”

GPI also stated that, unlike other recycling industries, the glass packaging industry recycles domestically and does not depend on foreign markets, thus creating American jobs and reducing the amount of energy needed for production.

The glass packaging industry is aiming to make all containers out of 50 percent or more recycled material by the year 2013.

A Greener Strategy for the Future

Currently, the institute estimates that the average content of recycled material in glass is 25 percent, and some states mandate all glass beverage containers contain a certain amount of recycled material. California law states containers must include 35 percent recycled glass while Oregon requires 50 percent.

However, the glass packaging industry faces a rocky road to 50 percent or more recycled material by 2013. Since January 2009, the average compensation for recycling brown glass has dropped from $13.50 to $11.25 per ton. This decline could deter consumers from recycling glass.

In a follow-up article to  GPI’s letter-to-the-editor, The New York Times detailed possible uses of recycled glass. The article cites the California-based Gallo Glass Company. The bottle maker uses 35 to 55 percent of recycled glass in its clear bottles and up to 80 percent for its dark green bottles.

According to Mike Ball, a technical specialist for Gallo Glass, the future of glass recycling is optimistic because of the minimal amount of energy used to turn it to molten glass. Green glass is especially practical because it’s able to use more recycled content due to its darker color.

Source: Earth911.comAuthor: shangyi

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