Thu, Jan 25, 2007 - Page 2 News List

Taipei obtains new beauty through use of recycled glass

By Shelley Shan  /  STAFF REPORTER

Glittering pavements on Fuxing S Road, Bade Road and Changchun Road in Taipei and buildings decorated with colorful glass mosaics -- these are all made possible by the innovative use of recycled glass.

The Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) estimates that on average 150,000 tonnes of glass containers are recycled each year, the equivalent of 300 million 600cc glass bottles.

Cheng Chen-long (鄭陳龍), section chief of the EPA's Recycling Fund Management Board, said that recycled bottles can be remade into glass containers.

Once crushed, recycled glass bottles can also be blended with other materials to produce valuable construction materials, such as glass asphalt, bricks and tiles.

He noted that the number of new glass containers manufactured each year by Taiwan have topped 24 tonnes a year. Except for some colored glass containers, almost all of these containers are recyclable.

Recycling all these used bottles or cans could generate a profit of NT$180 million (US$5.45 million) for recyclers, he added.

Meanwhile, recycling could spare the nation NT$525 million in transportation and cleaning costs.

Cheng said the electricity saved through the reuse of glass products could power 73,500 households for a month.

"Glass is a non bio-degradable material and takes up a lot of space in landfills," he said. "It is also incombustible, and damages garbage furnaces. It can affect both the environment and the operation of environmental protection facilities if it is not properly disposed of."

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