It takes just four ingredients to make glass - silica sand, soda ash, limestone and recycled glass (cullet). These four minerals are heated in a furnace to a temperature of 1200-1500 degrees. The resulting melted mixture is then formed into bottles and jars, cooled and ready for use.
- There are two forms of natural glass - when lighting strikes sand and during a volcanic eruption.
- In early times people shaped natural glass (obsidian) into knives, arrowheads, jewellery and money.
- The first glass vessels were produced about 1500 BC in Egypt and Mesopotamia.
Source: The History of Glass.
- Glass containers are 100 percent recycable, can be recycled endlessly and recoverd glass is used as one of the four main ingredients to make new glass.
- Glass containers produced today are 40 percent lighter than when they were 20 years ago, making them much easier to recycle.
- Every tonne of glass that is recycled results in one tonne of raw materials saved to process new glass including - 1,300 pounds of sand, 410 pounds of soda ash and 380 pounds of limestone.
- The energy saved by recycling one glass bottle will: power a 100watt light bulb for almost one hour or, power a computer for 25 minutes or, power a colour TV for 20 minutes or, power a washing machine for 10 minutes.
- The oldest examples of glass are Egyptian beads dating from 1200 BC.
Source: South Lakeland Recycling (UK)