Waste and trash from everyday human and industrial activities is becoming hazardous to the environment globally. In Africa, most of the waste is disposed of in uncontrolled and poorly managed dumpsites. Most of the world’s biggest dumpsites are found in Sub Saharan Africa which poses a great health and environmental risk.
Turning trash into cash will not only be a means to protect the environment, but also a means to make money. The recycling business is profitable, whether done small scale or large scale. Waste recycling is an easy way to turn trash into cash using locally available waste such as plastic bottles.
There are many kinds of waste and many ideas to turn trash into cash. Look around you and decide which type of waste you want to recycle and earn cash. If you are wondering where to start, this article will explain everything you need to know to start making money from trash.
How to Turn Trash into Cash
Below is a list of six low cost and profitable business ideas to turn your trash into cash.
1. Scrap Metal Recycling
Scrap metal is made up of iron (ferrous) and other non-iron metals (nonferrous) like aluminum. It can be recycled and used as raw material for production of new items without degradation. After collection, the scrap metal is sorted, shredded and melted. It forms new metals that can now be used for creation of new goods.
You can start at the lowest level of scrap metal dealer by collecting the small quantities available in your local area and sell to larger scrap metal collectors.
2. Tire Recycling
The automobile is fast growing. Tires are made of rubber and wires used for reinforcements. The tires are shredded and the wires removed until the rubber is pure. The purified rubber now becomes raw material for other rubber products such as shoes.
If you are looking to start small, tires can be used in various DIY ways. Tires can be painted and hang on trees to make swings for children. They can be sold as playing items for kids. Worn out tires can also be painted and used as climbers for jungle leisure activities.
You can also reuse old tires as planters. You can paint them into bright colours and use them as planters.
Finally, you can creatively cut and recycle tires to make chairs, tables and pet beds.
3. Plastic Recycling
Soft drink bottles, garbage bags, take-out food containers and yoghurt containers are among the most common types of plastic trash. Plastic recycling involves converting plastic trash to new and useful plastic products. Plastics are of different types, hence are recycled differently. The traditional method involves melting the plastic and molding it into new items.
The advanced method involves the use of chemicals to break down the plastic. The plastic can then be used to make crude oil, nylon and gas to create energy.
Both traditional and advanced recycling methods are a great way to earn money from plastic trash. You can choose any method depending on your resources and facilities.
4. Glass Recycling
Broken glass can be recycled and used to make useful glass items such as crockery and window panes. Glass can be recycled over and over without degrading. After collection, the glass is treated to remove any paper or plastic.
It is then sorted according to colour and purified again. The purified glass is now crushed and melted and molded into new glass items such as jars and bottles.
Glass that can be recycled includes bottles and jars. Light bulbs, mirrors, drinking glasses, eyeglasses and windows cannot be recycled.
5. Paper Recycling
Almost all paper can be recycled, ranging from office paper, magazines, cardboards, manuals and booklets. Some, however, cannot be recycled. These include pizza boxes, paper towels, coffee cups, tissue and brown envelopes. Paper is collected and sorted into magazines, cardboard and computer paper.
After sorting, the paper is made into pulp. This process requires a lot of water. To make pulp, the papers are chopped then water and chemicals are added. The mixture is subjected to heat and turns into pulp.
The pulp is then screened for contamination and cleaned.
Next is the removal of ink from the pulp. This is done through addition of chemicals. The pulp is now refined and colour stripping is done if you require coloured paper. If you require white paper, bleaching is done.
The clean paper pulp is now ready for production of new paper.
6. Aluminum Recycling
Aluminum is among the easiest items to recycle. During recycling, aluminum cans are usually shredded to remove any coloured coating. They are then melted to form molten material which can be used to mold new cans.
Aluminum foil can be recycled to make cast for engine components making cars lighter and more efficient.
There’s Money All Around You!
Yes! You are probably throwing money away or running away from it. Recycling is a great way to turn the trash around you into cash. There are a lot of DIY creative innovations that you can come up with and start earning money from trash. You can also apply for government grants in your country to help kick start your recycling business.
Recycling also reduces the need for raw materials for manufacturing new products. This makes it more cost effective to produce new goods.
As you make money, you will also be helping to tackle the climate change concern by reducing pollution.