Home Education The Dark Side of Furniture Removal (to the environment)

The Dark Side of Furniture Removal (to the environment)

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The Dark Side of Furniture Removal (to the environment)

It has never been easier and cheaper to change your interior design. Take a pot of paint for this wall and a great wallpaper for the other wall. Once done, you notice a change of your furniture might be in order, too. Why not? It’s cheap, and you only need a furniture removal that will not cost you a fortune either. If it’s not the odd urge to completely change your interior, it’s a move. Since you want to move as lightly as possible to save money for the movers, it seems easiest to get rid of your furniture. Or at least of some. Some pieces were that cheap that they’d not survive a move anyway. They’ve become too unstable over time, and it’s not worth the effort trying to repair them. However, as furniture has gotten cheaper and cheaper, the strain on the environment will get worse.


Our throwaway society

Once upon a time, people used to buy sturdy furniture made of wood that would last decades, if not hundreds of years. Wood furniture usually is easy to repair, and as long you’ve had no woodworms, you’ll be happy with it for a very long time. They work on repairs quickly, if necessary. If you didn’t like the color anymore or needed some touch-ups, someone would take care of it. There was an entire industry that didn’t just build quality furniture. They also knew how to repair it and other tricks to make it look as good as new. Especially the post-war generation didn’t throw away much. They knew it too well how certain things could be scarce, and they learned to hold on to everything. Although some items would not fulfill any purpose any longer, they’d keep it. You could need it again one day or someone else. 

Consequently, clothes and furniture were kept and handed down from one generation to the next. Only if something completely breaks can they schedule a furniture removal. Unfortunately, the post-war era also created quite a few hoarders. With that constant reminder about any item possibly finding another use one day, everything they will keep. Yet alone, the thought that something they can repair again made them hold on to everything.

However, the generation brought into this world by the post-war society thinks that there’s plenty of everything. Sometimes there’s no need for an item anymore; they toss it. Indeed, if you don’t like the color of furniture anymore, it’s tossed. If you’ve seen enough from your carpet, you launch it. Everything gets thrown that people don’t like anymore. And while there’s plenty of everything, there’s no need to find a new purpose for something you don’t require any longer. This applies practically to anything you own and which you can buy—clothes, plants, books, kitchenware, furniture, or even friends. You may probably not have to arrange a furniture removal for friends. The generation experiencing a seemingly never-ending surplus is quick to toss friends as quick as a cupboard. 

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The more you toss…

… the more ends up exactly where? In the landfills. Clothes may not need as much time to break down like plastic. Therefore, clothes are not as much of an issue in regards to bio degrebality as modern furniture. It’s been customary to give away clothes to more impoverished people and their respective organizations for a long time. But what about furnishings? As long as the pieces you let go of during a thorough furniture removal are wooden, there’s not much of an issue. They can use wood items as a solid fuel source for eco-friendly power stations. Unfortunately, the amount of proper wood furniture has been selling has drastically shrunk over the last few decades. With growing demand, tables had to be made cheaper and faster. 

You can’t build quality furniture; they produce it fast and as affordable as possible. And since it’s that cheap, it’s easier to let go of and simply buy new furniture. Some furniture, not a product to endure, let alone a decade anymore. Moreover, people with little money, such as students, don’t necessarily have the resources to buy quality pieces. They neither have much need for them. The most important is to furnish their little studio as fast and as cheap as possible. They need space to keep their books and their clothes unless they’re happy with piles on the floor. No one is happy with book piles because there’s no furniture.

Cheap furniture often involves toxic materials

It’s certainly great to be able to buy cheap furniture and replace it any time you like. However, most modern furniture is made of, doesn’t precisely recycle well, or break down in a landfill. Pretty much everything is made of particle boards these days. It drags the price tag down, but it usually contains formaldehyde. It’s used in a resin to bind wood chips. Everyone knows how toxic formaldehyde is; it is a known carcinogen. PVC would be another material that they use in furniture. It also contains formaldehyde. That’s not where the funny chemicals stop that they use during the modern manufacturing process. 

It’s precisely these chemicals that make it hard to let items undergo recycling after a furniture removal. Thus, they rarely recycle furniture and turns into the second most significant portion of urban waste—consequently, the waste in landfills increases. Yet alone in the USA more than nine million tonnes of furniture end up in the landfills after furniture removal. Those landfills are not usable again. When the furniture gets wet during rainfalls, the traces of the used chemicals seep into the ground. That means your cheap cupboard effectively poisons the groundwater in those areas. 

If you’re thinking about furniture removal, consider these steps first:

  • Think out of the box and upcycle the item for a different purpose
  • Donate the furniture
  • Research possible repair options
  • Choose quality furniture from the start, and you’ll find unique pieces in the classifieds that might only require a new coat of paint.


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