Sustainability

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Without recycling, Earth's natural resources would diminish even more quickly than they already do from human activity. Using items made from recycled material, such as paper, helps prevent deforestation. Recycling also reduces the amount of trash cluttering the planet.

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  • What is self-sustaining energy?

    Q: What is self-sustaining energy?

    A: Self-sustaining energy, also known as sustainable energy, is energy that meets present needs without depleting natural resources for future generations. It focuses on preserving the environment while developing technology in ways that use renewable energy.
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  • What can I do to help save the environment?

    Q: What can I do to help save the environment?

    A: Eliminate paper. Easing up on the use of paper and paper products will help with one of the biggest landfill culprits. Good places to start include replacing paper gift wrapping with fabric or used grocery bags, using glassware instead of paper plates, bringing reusable shopping bags for use at the store, and replacing paper towels with washable hand towels.
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  • How is coal used by humans?

    Q: How is coal used by humans?

    A: Humans use coal in many ways, including as a fuel and as a source of carbon. As a solid fuel, coal burns to provide heat from stoves, furnaces and boilers as well as energy to supply electrical generating plants. Metal refiners use coke, a solid residue from low-sulfur bituminous coal, in purifying metals in blast furnaces.
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  • What would happen if people did not recycle?

    Q: What would happen if people did not recycle?

    A: Without recycling, Earth's natural resources would diminish even more quickly than they already do from human activity. Using items made from recycled material, such as paper, helps prevent deforestation. Recycling also reduces the amount of trash cluttering the planet.
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  • Why should we recycle metals?

    Q: Why should we recycle metals?

    A: Recycling metals offers many benefits, including conserving natural resources, reducing emissions and creating new jobs. Forbes reports that recycling metals supported over 450,000 jobs in the United States as of 2011, generating over $90 billion annually.
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  • How do you dispose of a lithium-ion battery?

    Q: How do you dispose of a lithium-ion battery?

    A: Lithium-ion and other rechargeable batteries should be recycled so that any hazardous waste, including lead acid and nickel cadmium, can be removed from the waste cycle. Federal guidelines consider lithium-ion and nickel metal hydride batteries to be non-hazardous.
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  • What do trees provide?

    Q: What do trees provide?

    A: One of the most important things that trees give people is oxygen to breathe. Trees also give shade, house animals and muffle noise.
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  • What is hydroelectric energy?

    Q: What is hydroelectric energy?

    A: Hydroelectric energy converts the kinetic energy of flowing water into electricity using a turbine. Water flows through a channel, usually carefully regulated as part of a dam spillway, and it turns the blades of the turbine. As long as water continues to flow steadily, the turbine produces a steady stream of electricity. The U.S. Geological Survey Science School states that 19 percent of the world's electricity comes from hydroelectric energy.
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  • What are reforestation projects?

    Q: What are reforestation projects?

    A: Reforestation projects refer to the restocking of depleted forests and woodlands to counteract the effects of deforestation. Reforestation rebuilds ecosystems and animal habitats, mitigates pollution and global warming, replenishes soil nutrients, stops erosion, and provides timber for industrial and commercial use. Organizations involved in reforestation projects also use local labor to plant new trees, creating jobs and improving the quality of life of local communities.
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  • Where can I recycle postage stamps?

    Q: Where can I recycle postage stamps?

    A: When they are still attached to envelopes, used stamps are recycled with paper. They are placed in recycling bins or delivered to local recycling facilities.
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  • Q: What are the options for recycling scrap metal?

    A: A common option for recycling scrap metal is to take it to a scrap yard for a cash payout. Most scrap metal has some cash value, but scrap yards still recycle metal that does not. The difference is that there is no cash payout in these cases.
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  • How do you get rid of medical waste?

    Q: How do you get rid of medical waste?

    A: Although each state has varying guidelines on how to rid of medical waste, standard recommendations are to use sharps containers to collect needles and to mix expired medicines in kitty litter. The Food and Drug Administration recommends that consumers dispose of household medical waste according to the community guidelines.
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  • Q: What are some marine sanitation devices with minimal environmental impact?

    A: Type III marine sanitation devices offer the least environmental impact of all marine sanitation devices. Types I and II also reduce the environmental impact of sewage by treating the waste before it is discharged.
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  • Q: What are the disadvantages of recycling?

    A: Recycling is a means of protecting and saving the environment. While it does have many benefits, there are several disadvantages of recycling. For one, recycling is not always cost-effective. In certain cases, more than one factory needs to be established to process reusable products.
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  • Q: What are the benefits of purchasing a home solar power system?

    A: The two major benefits of purchasing and installing a home solar power system are economical and environmental. The latter benefit is due to solar power being a zero-carbon emission form of electrical generation. Economic benefits of solar power include lower utility bills, surplus energy sell-back and increased property values.
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  • Q: What is the process for recycling carpet?

    A: The process for recycling carpets includes the collection and transport of carpets into material recovery facilities, the manufacturing of new products from the recovered materials and the selling and purchase of recycled materials. The products include carpets, carpet padding and automotive parts.
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  • Q: How many people regularly recycle?

    A: A 2007 Harris poll showed that only 30 percent of adults between the ages of 18 and 30 recycle regularly. People throughout the world recycle for a number of reasons, but not everyone has jumped on the recycling bandwagon.
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  • Q: Why is recycling important?

    A: Recycling is important for making the environment a cleaner place, conserving materials, saving energy and reducing the amount of garbage in landfills. One of the most important benefits of recycling is the impact it has on the Earth. Recycling different materials helps the environment by reducing the use of natural resources. For example, recycling paper goods reduces the number of trees cut down each year.
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  • Q: Where in the world is wind power used?

    A: As of the end of 2013, the country with the top wind power producing capacity in the world is China. Other top wind producing countries, in order, are the United States, Germany, Spain, India, the United Kingdom, Italy, France, Canada and Denmark. Some countries, such as the United Kingdom and Denmark, rely heavily on offshore wind power, whereas other countries build most of their wind power facilities on land.
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  • Q: What organizations offer free trees to the public?

    A: The Arbor Day Foundation, MillionTreesNYC and TreePhilly are some organizations that offer free trees to the public. Free tree programs are available in many major cities throughout the United States via the local or city government.
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  • Q: Why are fossil fuels non-renewable?

    A: Fossil fuels are non-renewable because they take millions of years to form. Fossil fuels make up most sources of non-renewable energy, and they were created millions of years ago as a result of marine creatures decaying under immense pressure and heat.
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