Heroes

Here are the top 5 reasons people do and don't recycle.

It's not saying you should recycle. But you might more often once you've seen this.

Here are the top 5 reasons people do and don't recycle.

Almost everyone knows it's good to recycle. So why don't we all do it?

A report by Ipsos says that only half of Americans recycle every day, and more than 1 in 10 of us don't recycle at all.


Image by Raymond Bryson/Flickr (altered).

Who recycles on a daily basis?

Among people who recycle regularly, there seems to be strong correlations to education, age, and location, with college grads, older Americans, and residents in the Northeast and West leading the pack.

Via GOOD.

Why do people choose to recycle?

Most respondents do it for the obvious reason: It's good for the planet.

Via GOOD.

But surprisingly, a good number of folks do it because they think it helps the economy — which it does. According to the EPA, which was citing a report by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance:

"[For] every 10,000 tons of solid waste going to landfills, 1 job is created. That same amount of waste — kept out of landfills — can create 10 recycling jobs or 75 materials reuse jobs."

Other studies have said that if the U.S. were to achieve a 75% recycling rate by 2030, the country could create 1.5 million to 2.3 million new jobs.

But what about all those people who aren't recycling?

The top reason people said they don't recycle is really more of a failure of state and local governments for not making recycling more available to them.

Via GOOD.

Others gave what even they might call excuses, such as "It takes too long" or "It's hard to remember." I hear that. I really do. But I know you can do it!

And some just think it costs too much to recycle, which is also an issue that governments need to deal with.

There is one reason people don't recycle that we can help with right now: not knowing what to recycle.

And that is OK to admit. But instead of jamming that stuff into landfills (like half of us are doing), how 'bout we try something different?

Via GOOD.

Here's a list of recyclable materials compiled by the EPA.

Bookmark it. Print it. Slap it on your fridge. And refer to it any time you're wavering between the trash and recycling bins.

Oh, and a bonus tip: You know those empty pizza boxes that are kinda greasy and caked with melted cheese? They're not recyclable. But they are compostable.

Check out the full infographic from GOOD magazine:

Feel like sticking around? Here's a great follow-up message. It involves talking animals.


Photo courtesy of Justin Sather
True

Upworthy and GoFundMe are celebrating ideas that make the world a better, kinder place. Visit upworthy.com/kindness to join the largest collaboration for human kindness in history and start your own GoFundMe.

While most 10-year-olds are playing Minecraft, riding bikes, or watching YouTube videos, Justin Sather is intent on saving the planet. And it all started with a frog blanket when he was a baby.

"He carried it everywhere," Justin's mom tells us. "He had frog everything, even a frog-themed birthday party."

In kindergarten, Justin learned that frogs are an indicator species – animals, plants, or microorganisms used to monitor drastic changes in our environment. With nearly one-third of frog species on the verge of extinction due to pollution, pesticides, contaminated water, and habitat destruction, Justin realized that his little amphibian friends had something important to say.

"The frogs are telling us the planet needs our help," says Justin.

While it was his love of frogs that led him to understand how important the species are to our ecosystem, it wasn't until he read the children's book What Do You Do With An Idea by Kobi Yamada that Justin-the-activist was born.

Inspired by the book and with his mother's help, he set out on a mission to raise funds for frog habitats by selling toy frogs in his Los Angeles neighborhood. But it was his frog art which incorporated scientific facts that caught people's attention. Justin's message spread from neighbor to neighbor and through social media; so much so that he was able to raise $2,000 for the non-profit Save The Frogs.

And while many kids might have their 8th birthday party at a laser tag center or a waterslide park, Justin invited his friends to the Ballona wetlands ecological preserve to pick invasive weeds and discuss the harms of plastic pollution.

Justin's determination to save the frogs and help the planet got a massive boost when he met legendary conservationist Dr. Jane Goodall.

Photo courtesy of Justin Sather

At one of her Roots and Shoots youth initiative events, Dr. Goodall was so impressed with Justin's enthusiasm for helping frogs, she challenged the young activist to take it one step further and focus on plastic pollution as well. Justin accepted her challenge and soon after was featured in an issue of Bravery Magazine dedicated to Jane Goodall.

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Photo by Gaelle Marcel on Unsplash

As it turns out, underdog stories can have cats as the main character.

Purrington Cat Lounge, where "adoptable cats roam freely and await your visit" and patrons can pay a small entry fee for the chance to sip coffee alongside feline friends, boasted legendary adoption rates since its conception in January 2015.


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