PLASTICS & PLASTICS

Sorting waste is easy if you know some basic rules. Plastic is one of the most used and talked about materials, let’s find out the most common types of plastics.

In many Italian cities, the collection of waste sorting is now widespread, often with door-to-door mode. In 2017, in Italy was differentiated 55.54% of municipal waste (those that we produce at home to be clear). This is too little! There is also a significant discrepancy between the North and the South of Italy, this is probably due to the lack of awareness and information that is done on the subject and, sometimes, even a good dose of indifference.

Today we are going to focus on plastic packaging. Once again we are helped by the Disney family on Topolino n°1927 of 11/1/1992, where we find an insert entitled Qui, Quo, Qua and the wise packaging. The three ducks are assigned by Archimedes to follow his latest invention around the city. It consists of a compacting, sorting and recycling robot, which during its tour explains to the children the differences between different types of packaging.

In 2017 in Italy, each person (including children) produced 21.1 kg of plastic, corresponding to 93% of the packaging collected.

But as “Riciclator” teaches us, in the comic strip, plastic packaging is not all the same and is not all recyclable,but that’s not all! The disposal modalities often vary from municipality to municipality, more precisely they depend on the company that deals with the collection of waste in your area.

So how do you regulate yourself? There are some indications valid throughout the country and Europe, but small differences are to be verified directly with the company that deals with waste collection.

Here are some general rules:

  • plastic packaging is recyclable, so bottles, packages, boxes and the like.
  • toys and plastic materials “mixed” are NOT recyclable, so that they contain other materials (for example plastic parts of the car).
  • what is thrown in the separate collection must be cleaned, but why? This is because too much residue inside the packaging can compromise the recycling of the product. It is not necessary that the package is spotlessly clean, but most of the residues must be removed.
  • it is better to remove the caps from the bottles, since they are made of different plastics, they will be recycled differently.
  • the bottles should be flattened but NOT CRUMPLED. In fact, for the computer that detects the shape of the packaging will be easier to correctly recognize the object to recycle.
  • paper labels should be removed and disposed apart.

How can I tell if a plastic product is recyclable? I can rely on the symbol that I find on the packaging, the triangle composed of 3 arrows, with a number in the middle. Below is the summary table to learn how to recognize the symbols.

What if I don’t remember? How do I know if my municipality has special rules? Generally, the companies that deal with waste disposal make available to users a toll-free number to contact in case of doubt or need, use it! There is a charge for the collection service, it is better to make the most of the possibilities made available to us.

And where there is no door-to-door collection? Usually the containers for recycling are placed at a reasonable distance from the houses so that they are easily accessible by all citizens.

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