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WNY GOING GREEN: ALUMINUM

Friday, 02.04.2011 / 2:35 PM / Blue & Gold Make Green
By Michael Jafari  - Graduate Assistant (2010)
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WNY GOING GREEN: ALUMINUM
Soda can be packaged in both aluminum cans and plastic bottles, but many of us wonder: what is the difference between the two choices?

Environmentally, aluminum is the better option, as it is the most valuable and cost-effective material that we recycle and can be turned into new cans over and over again.

Aluminum is a silvery, white metal that is the third-most common element after oxygen and silicon.  What makes aluminum different from most minerals is its ability to withstand rust.  Because of this feature, aluminum is used in the structure of buildings, cars, poles and even space shuttles. 

In addition, aluminum is 100% recyclable.  Recycling centers can melt aluminum and reshape it into scrap metal.  According to the Aluminum Association, recycling aluminum saves 95% of the energy that is needed to produce it from ore, so it is considerably less expensive to recycle it.

Plastic is a man-made material that is created by linking together several large molecules.  Petroleum and natural gas are the most common materials that make up most plastics.  Because of its synthetic texture, plastic can be recycled into textiles, carpets and bottles.  Since it is made up of fossil fuels, plastic does not rot and you can mold it into several different shapes. 

However, many types of plastics are not easy to recycle because it is difficult to form a new product from them.  Research conducted by ehow.com in 2008 suggests that recycled plastics represented only about 7% of the plastics disposed of, and recycled aluminum represented about 21% of the aluminum disposed of in 2008.

Also, the fossil fuels used to create plastic are non-renewable sources of energy.  According to an article by greenbrig.com, it is estimated that 17 million barrels of oil are directly used to produce plastic water bottles alone every year. 

Although aluminum and plastic are both recyclable, aluminum is friendlier to the environment because it is formed with considerably less energy and is put together without the use of limited resources. 

If aluminum packaging is hard to come by, then make sure you purchase water or soda bottles that have an eco-slim cap.  The eco-slim cap contains 20% less plastic than the ordinary bottle in an ongoing effort to keep the environment more eco-friendly.  If you’re at home and are looking for something to drink, remember to use a re-useable glass to refill your drink so you can conserve the plastic bottles around your home.

By taking the effort to switch to aluminum cans, purchase eco-slim bottles and use refillable cups, you can make a difference in turning our community into a greener environment.  For more tips on staying healthy and going green at home, or to become a Green Team Member, click here.

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
C. Hodgson 72 20 24 -26 44
T. Ennis 80 21 22 -25 43
D. Stafford 70 16 18 -19 34
C. Ehrhoff 79 6 27 -27 33
C. Stewart 63 15 11 0 26
C. Conacher 79 7 19 1 26
T. Myers 62 9 13 -26 22
Z. Girgensons 70 8 14 -6 22
M. Foligno 74 7 12 -17 19
J. McBain 69 6 11 -13 17
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
M. Neuvirth 4 8 2 .921 2.78
J. Enroth 4 17 5 .911 2.82