Recycling in Germany


In the United States, over 200 million tons of garbage are produced annually. That's 1,560 pounds of trash per person. Yes, you read that right. You throw out three quarters of a ton of trash every year. In Germany, only about 30 million tons of garbage are produced each year, which amounts to about 670 pounds per person. How is it that people produce 2.3x more trash in the United States than they do in Germany? Well, one reason is that there are a lot more people in the United States to produce garbage, but there's another important factor, and that's recycling. Due to Germany's amazing recycling system, nearly 66% of its waste is now recycled, more than any other country in the world!

What community need did I learn about?:

In Mainz, as well as the rest of Germany, recycling is a very big deal. There is even an entire recycling culture surrounding it. Every household participates, and there are lots of rules you are supposed to follow. Although recycling takes a lot of time and effort, it has had a great environmental impact in Germany. However, the system takes teamwork to accomplish. Every single person in every single community must do their part.

Why does the community have this need?:

Recycling is just as important to human beings as it is to the earth. Waste has a very harmful impact on the planet.