Green Glass bottleThe Importance of Recycling Glass in Ireland

Ireland has a long-standing tradition of using glass for various purposes like packaging, decoration, and construction. In Ireland, recycling glass is seen as one of the most effective ways to reduce environmental pollution and conserve energy. In this blog post, we will discuss why recycling glass is essential and how you can play your part in contributing to a greener planet.

Protecting the environment

One of the key benefits of recycling glass is that it helps protect our environment. When glass is disposed of in a landfill, it can take up to 1 million years to decompose and emit greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming. By recycling glass correctly, we can reduce carbon emissions, save energy and protect natural resources. Ireland is already on track to meet new EU recycling targets for 2025 and 2030 for glass. 

Recycling one ton of glass saves 1.2 tons of raw materials such as sand and limestone and reduces carbon dioxide emissions by about 300 kilograms.

Creating jobs

Recycling glass is not only environmentally friendly but also an essential source of employment. The glass recycling industry provides thousands of jobs in Ireland, from collection and transportation to sorting, processing, and manufacturing. By supporting the glass recycling industry, you are not only contributing to the environment but also the economy.

Conserving energy

Making new glass from raw materials requires a lot of energy. However, recycling glass requires much less energy, saving up to 50% in energy costs. When glass is recycled, it is melted down and shaped into new products, saving energy and reducing the need for raw materials. As Ireland moves towards a more sustainable future, recycling glass is one of the easiest ways to conserve energy and reduce our carbon footprint.

Reducing landfill waste

Recycling glass reduces the amount of waste that ends up in landfills. By reducing landfill waste, we can prolong the life of landfills, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and ultimately reduce the impact on the environment. Nationally, we could reduce our landfill waste by as much as 90% if we recycle all the available glass. Currently glass is one of our best performing items for recycling. We’re now recycling 84pc of glass and 73pc of paper and cardboard.

Public Health

Recycling glass can also make a difference to public health. When glass is disposed of in landfills or oceans, it can cause harm to wildlife and marine life. Broken glass is also a significant hazard for humans, particularly young children and animals. Recycling glass helps reduce the risks of broken glass and protects public health.


In essence, recycling glass is essential for protecting the environment, conserving energy, creating jobs, reducing landfill waste, and promoting public health. It may seem like a small contribution, but by recycling glass, you are playing a fundamental role in building a sustainable future. Identify your nearest glass bank, or speak to your local council regular collection to do your part in supporting glass recycling. Let us all play an active role in conserving the environment and securing a cleaner, greener future for all.