Recycling is a process using materials (waste) into new products to prevent waste of potentially useful materials, reduce the consumption of fresh raw materials, reduce energy usage, reduce air pollution (from incineration) and water pollution (from landfilling) by reducing the need for "conventional" waste disposal, faire du compost and lower greenhouse gas emissions as compared to plastic production. Recycling is a key component of modern waste reduction and is the third component of the "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle" waste hierarchy.
The glass, lumber, wood pulp, and paper manufacturers all deal directly in commonly recycled materials. However, old rubber tires may be collected and recycled by independent tire dealers for a profit.
Apartment buildings often have dust flumes in which residents can dispose of their waste in stainless steel waste containers. These chutes usually lead to some large receptacle or waste-disposal complex in the basement.
In some U.S. states, a program called RecycleBank pays people to recycle, receiving money from local municipalities for the reduction in landfill space which must be purchased. It uses a single stream process in which all material is automatically sorted.
Many economists favor a moderate level of government intervention to provide recycling services. Economists of this mindset probably view product disposal as an externality of production and subsequently argue government is most capable of alleviating such a dilemma.