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A very good morning to Mr. Mariapan and fellow friends. Before I start my speech, I would like to ask all of you a question: Do you hear that our mother earth is crying? Perhaps you would say 'no', but please take a look at these pictures. She is crying because the air has been polluted by industrial smoke; she is crying because of global warming; she is crying because of contaminated water; she is crying because you are unconcerned about her pain. Well, we can save this world, but it is not like a superhero using some extraordinary superpower to heal this world. That is impossible. In fact, your mission is very simple and easy and everyone can do it! Do you want to save this world? Then, let's get recycling.
What is recycling? It is defined processing used materials and waste into new products to prevent waste of potentially useful materials. Then, why It is so important?
Firstly, we face a large problem with trash build up on our Earth and recycling saves space in landfills.
-Solely focusing on Malaysia, we produce 19,000 tones of waste every day, and a majority of that ends up in landfills. 19,000 tones, can you imagine that? 19,000 tones, if you piled it all up it would be as high as 36 Petronas Twin Towers.
- Malaysia currently has 230 landfill sites and 80% of them will reach capacity within the next two years. Soon, there is going to be a big problem as landfills cause serious pollution. For example, from the picture, we notice that landfills are associated with air pollution, water pollution, land pollution as well as green house effect.
-Therefore, to manage the growing volume of solid waste it is necessary to turn to alternative methods such as recycling. If landfills fill up we have to find new space for new landfills. If that happens, you better pray that the new landfills won't build behind your house's backyard. So, let's get recycling.
Secondly, recycling saves energy and natural resources.
-Most of the things in a trash bag can be reclaimed through recycling. For instances, paper, metal, plastics and glass. By using materials more than once, we conserve natural resources ensuring our children's futures.
-Next, I have some interesting facts here to share with all of you
(1) 1 ton of recycled paper saves 17 trees about 35 feet tall. Recycling 1 stack of newspapers 6 feet tall saves the life of one 35 feet tree.
(2) 1 recycled tin can would save enough energy to power a television for 3 hours.
(3) 1 recycled plastic bottle would save enough energy to power a 60-watt light bulb for 3 hours.
-Obviously, recycling saves natural resources by reducing the need for raw energy and save energy as it often takes less energy to make products from recycled material than raw material. Therefore, let's get recycling.
Thirdly, recycling can save money and create job opportunities.
-Our former prime minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, said this in an environmental conference. He said: "Currently, our country needs to spend RM 400 mil just to manage these waste" and "Just by recycling as much as 22% of the 5 million tones of waste produced each year could save the government RM 88 mill a year."
-Besides that, recycling can make money as well. As we know, humans are selfish by nature; most of the people might pay no heed to the importance I mentioned earlier and when you ask them to contribute a little effort on recycling, they might just simply answer you;' It is none of my business." Yet, when I link money with recycling, it definitely can arouse interest among public.
-Well, you can make money by turning your trash into extra cash. For example, you can sell your trash in many recycling centers. You can trade in your paper, aluminum and other object that is capable of being recycled for cash. Even though the pay off is small, but money is still money and it is so shiny that makes everyone loves it.
-Next, recycling creates jobs and you can't deny it. Recycling creates up to 5 times more jobs than waste disposal alone. It will create jobs for engineers, machine specialists, environmental personnel, general workers and many more. In North Carolina, on 2004, recycling employs approximately 14 000 people across the state and this has increased 60% in ten years. Also, the number of companies listed in the state's recycling markets directory has increased 74% in 10 years. As we know, today's global economic crisis means that it is so hard to find a job. Who knows in the future one of our friends or even I might work in recycling field to earn a livelihood. Indeed, recycling can save money and creates m ore job opportunities. So, let's get recycling.
Well, I had talking a lot of importance of recycling and now I'm going to tell you what you can do to save this environment. Your recycling mission is not impossible! In fact, it is very simple
Recycling at home
-Make space next to your bin for a recycling container. Then, it is as simple to recycle as it is to throw it away. For families that cannot afford a recycling container, don't worry, just sort the wastes properly. Waste sorting is the process by which waste is separated into different elements. For example, separate your waste into paper, metal and glass and then visit nearby recycling centre to turn your rubbish into cash.
-Here is a list of things that you should always recycle. Surprisingly, we notice that almost everything can be recycled.
Recycling at school
-As we know, paper is the main form of waste produced by schools. If possible, Set up a paper collection scheme for each classroom or request the school administrator to provide paper recycling bin.
- if you are enthusiastic enough, inform your friends about the advantages of recycling and try to persuade them to get involved in recycling.
-Furthermore, you can organize some educational programs through posters, web page, e-mail and student orientation. Well, I know that not everyone is so enthusiastic yet I will glad and appreciate when I see you throw the rubbish into the recycle bins.
Last but not least, be a 'green' consumer.
- a green consumer is someone who is very concerned about the environment and, therefore, only purchases products that are environmentally-friendly or eco-friendly.
-For example, you should purchase products that are recyclable, buy products that are made from recycled material and avoid purchasing hazardous materials which is hard to recycle.
Now, I want you to ask yourself, why don't you recycle more often? Well, I had told you the benefits of recycling it is extremely easy to recycle. I think most of you don't want a landfill is built behind your house's back yard. Also, I hope you don't just sit by and watch our mother Earth turn into a ball of trash. Lastly, I want to end my speech with a quotation "When we heal the earth, we heal ourselves." So, what are you waiting for? Let's get recycling!
Well, that's all from me. Thank you.