In 1995, New Zealanders buried over three million tonnes of rubbish in landfills. As organic waste begins to break down it releases methane. Scientists have estimated that 36% of human-generated methane is released from landfills in this way. The methane is 21 times more effective in trapping heat in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide, contributing to global warming. Recycling instead of dumping rubbish, however, results in lower greenhouse gas emissions. Less waste means less methane. In addition, carbon emissions are decreased when goods are made from recycled material rather than from scratch. Emissions are four to five times lower when products are made from recycled steel, copper, glass and paper, and up to 40 times lower for aluminium.
Te whakamahi i tēnei tūemi
Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Photograph by Shirley Williams
This item has been provided for private study purposes (such as school projects, family and local history research) and any published reproduction (print or electronic) may infringe copyright law. It is the responsibility of the user of any material to obtain clearance from the copyright holder.