John Oliver busted some of the biggest recycling myths this weekend, including the fact that many of the plastics that people use every day are not recyclable in most places.
The “Last Week Tonight” host said that while plastics production is increasing, less than 9 percent of plastics in the US are recycled. But that hasn’t stopped people from trying to recycle the rest.
Non-recyclable items show up in recycling bins so often that waste managers have a name for them: the cycle of wants or things that people just wish could be recycled but can’t.
“The term wish cycle is too good to waste in garbage,” Oliver said. “The wish cycle sounds like a spinning class taught by a unicorn, or the sewage treatment system at Hogwarts: ‘Here, kids, is where we wish to cycle all the collected urine in this delicious butterbeer.’
Oliver took a look at what happens to recyclables, as well as what happens to the other 91 percent of plastics. There is also a “horrible goat-man hybrid”:
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