Biases in recycling

The Behavioral Economics of Recycling

We all know we should recycle, but even committed recyclers can be erratic, cleaning and sorting bottles one day, and tossing glass in the trash the next. Why? It turns out that an array of biases sway our decisions about what to place in the green bin and what to throw away. Two such biases emerged in research my colleagues and I recently conducted on disposal habits. First, we found that people are more likely to recycle items that haven’t been distorted—like undented soda cans and paper that hasn’t been torn into pieces (we call this the “distortion bias”). ….[READ]