Recycling in general is a good idea, but it is not an excuse to generate more waste than necessary. Its like if you started exercising, it's not an excuse to eat as much as you want. You'll end up worst off than you were before. Recycling without reduction will result in the same thing. Certain recycling like scrap metal and aluminum makes sense as it take more money and resources to extract new metal from the ground than the reuse recycled metal. Plastic, on the other hand, is not worth recycling and a lot of it can't even be recycled.
Most people put plastics into the recycling bin without a second thought. Their plastic waste ends up at third party recycling companies that take care of a lot city's plastic recycling. These companies would take the plastic and ship it out to China. Their hands are wiped clean of the waste and it was up to China to figure it out what to do with it. China ends up burying it, burning it, and very few of it is actually recycled. Most people don't realize that most plastics aren't even recyclable. Only a small percentage of plastics is actually recyclable.
In 2018, China's National Sword policy halted the import of plastics and other materials destined for its recycling processors. For decades, these facilities had dealt with almost half of the waste that the rest of the world considered to be "recyclable." This caused a shockwave in plastic recycling and its affect were felt by most of the world. Now that America can't export their plastic waste to China, cities had problem getting rid of their plastic waste. Some countries (like Vietnam) took up the mantle but none could take the amount of plastic waste China previously took in.
This result in a backlog of plastic waste build up for a lot of cities in America. Cities ended up doing what China once did, which was burying it and burning it. Without awareness, people continue to buy/use plastics without realizing the amount of environmental damage it causes. Very few people are aware most of our plastic "recycling" ends up in our landfills. The concept of plastic recycling gives people justification to use more and more plastics.
The idea that consumers are responsibility for the amount of plastic that are created by the companies selling their products are fraud. Companies have been pushing the narrative that consumers are ultimately responsible for all the waste created by themselves since the 70's. They have successfully gas light their consumers to think it's their responsibility to recycle and their failure if they don't. In reality, the companies producing the plastics should be responsible for all the waste they've created. It's the biggest success story of the ages. We need to hold companies responsible for the amount of plastic waste they created.
So what can you do to fight back? Don't use single use plastics if you don't need to. Use glass, metal, paper whenever you can. Make your voice heard to companies like Coke that use a lot of plastic for their bottling. Reduce and reuse before recycling. Most importantly, buy less stuff.
recycling fraud plastics