Saving the Planet through Recycling Technologies

Air Quality on Earth in 2020-2021 was its cleanest in the last 5 years. This is mostly due COVID-19 induced locked downs, where predominantly travel has is much lower than normal. With vaccines roll-out picking up in a lot of countries, countries are opening up their economies and with that is the return to normal life. With the air cleaner should we still look at the climate change crisis? There have been numerous studies and publications about the impact of COVID-19 on the climate change crisis due to the cleaner air we are breathing now. Studies have shown that the actual impact of the frozen economic activities due to lockdowns and restrictions was minimal. This begs the question, what can we do to save the planet from the impending climate change crisis? Read through to discover how each of us can help in saving the planet.

There are countries like Sweden that are leading the world in recycling and even importing waste to recycle in its facilities. In 2018 Sweden has exceeded its own government’s target for recycling where recycling and everyday sustainability is a normal part of life. In the UK recycling rates are much lower but on par with most developed economies. The UK government is actively pursuing a strategy for the increase of recycling rates and to be on par with other European countries. Within the  European Union recycling is embedded in regulations although one hindrance is the low cost of raw materials for production.

As individuals we can contribute to making this world a better place, starting with the humble act of recycling. Recycling is something each of us can do and it is as simple as sorting waste and putting them to the right bins and have major benefits such as:

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Saves energy and public money, essentially the taxes you pay can go to better causes
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Create jobs, like any industry recycling is creating new jobs
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Protecting ecosystems and wildlife, just imagine the amount waste in the ocean and on land
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Encourages waste reduction and reduce demand for raw and natural materials

One of the biggest drawbacks to recycling is sorting, it takes time for us to develop the mentality of sorting our trash. To help sort-out trash there is a need for separate bins for each type of trash (plastic, bottle, paper, organic, battery, others), however sometimes we unconsciously throw things away in the wrong bins.

To improve sorting, native mobile applications such as AWTG’s Trash on Demand (ToD) are powered with Image Recognition to determine the composition of various items and advise which bins they should go to. Image Recognition technologies do not only use the QR codes of the products but use known properties of materials to determine how they should be recycled.

Once thrash is properly sorted bins must be emptied in order to ensure other waste materials are not placed in the wrong bins, especially in public places and living complexes. ToD has a feature that functions like a ride-hailing app, Uber, Grab, Lyft, and so on, to request trash pick-up on-demand once bins are filled. It also enables tracking of collection routes and progress to ensure residents, trash collectors, and service operators can track the progress of the collection process and that no bins are missed. This is specifically useful in public spaces and where bin collection schedules are a stretch due to the availability of resources and budget.

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Technologies like ToD can assist us to ensure we can contribute in our own little ways in protecting our planet from an impending climate crisis through recycling. Although recycling plays a small part in saving the planet, it’s a good start and a very high recycling rate is achievable and helps us to conserve our natural resources for generations to come.