Glass Recycling: Good for the Earth and You

Share Article

Glass recycling has a large, positive impact on the environment.

In honor of Earth Day, O-I, the world's largest manufacturer of glass packaging, details the impact glass recycling has on the Earth. Recycling one glass bottle saves enough energy to power a 60-watt bulb for four hours, a computer for 30 minutes or a television for 20 minutes.

"I don't think the public realizes how everything adds up," says Paul Smith, manager of recycled glass for O-I.

Each American discards approximately 500 pounds of glass per year, sending more than 11 million tons of glass to landfills. Every ton that ends up in the landfill could have been recycled.

Because glass is made from all-natural raw materials, it is the only type of packaging that is 100 percent recyclable. Glass is also endlessly recyclable, which means it remains as pure and strong as the original container each time it goes through the recycling system. In addition to being the world's largest manufacturer of glass containers, O-I is the largest consumer of recycled glass and uses about 35 percent recycled glass in its U.S. operations and as much as 90 percent in Europe, where recycling rates are higher.

Recycling glass:

  • Saves energy
  •     By using recycled glass in making new glass containers, the glass container manufacturers reduce energy input to its furnaces. In fact, for every 10 percent increase in recycled glass used in manufacturing, 2.5 percent of the energy required is reduced.
  • Decreases greenhouse gas emissions
  •     For every six tons of recycled glass used in manufacturing new glass containers, one ton of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, is reduced.
  • Saves raw materials
  •     For every ton of glass recycled, more than a ton of raw materials are saved, including 1,300 pounds of sand, 410 pounds of soda ash and 380 pounds of limestone
  • Lessens landfill loads
  •     Recycling glass lessens the load on landfills

"Recycling glass is more important now than ever before," says Smith. "We need to save energy, our landfills and our planet. Every recycled bottle helps create a cleaner, more efficient planet. Do your part one bottle at a time."

To learn more about glass container recycling visit the Glass Packaging Institute,

About O-I
Millions of times a day, O-I glass containers, healthcare packaging and specialty closure systems deliver many of the world's best-known consumer products to people all around the world. With leading positions in Europe, North America, Asia Pacific and Latin America, O-I provides consumer-preferred products that enable superior taste, purity, visual appeal and value benefits for our customers' products. Established in 1903, the company employs nearly 30,000 people and has more than 100 manufacturing facilities in 23 countries. In 2006, annual sales were $7.4 billion. For more information, visit


Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Jenell Loschke

Email >
Visit website