Date of Award
Bachelor of Arts
Recycling efforts up until now have been generally successful. The United States has gone from being a complete "throw-away" society to one with recycling firmly implanted in its consciousness. Over the past decade, the amount of material collected for recycling has increased dramatically. Yet, we must remember that recycling is much more than just collection. There are three stages involved in completing the full recycling cycle, and collection is only the first. The second and third stages involve reproduction and resale. Overall, America has done well on the first two stages. The advancement of technology has greatly increased our ability to reclaim materials, many of which are used to make products of the same quality as those of virgin material (aluminum recycling, for example). The third stage of recycling involves the selling and buying of products made from recycled materials. Without markets, recycling centers simply become "above-ground" landfills and do not help solve the problem of waste. We must take a more holistic approach to recycling--one that takes into account all three stages of recycling. This approach must be taken by all consumers: the American public, business and industry, and federal, state, and local governments.
Finnell, Juli, "The culmination of a major" (1994). Honors Theses. 624.