Monster paper recycling takes mere minutes in awesome time-lapse

A new video folds hours of New York's paper recycling program into just 3.5 minutes, and the results are completely captivating.

You've no doubt tossed paper into a recycling bin at some point in your life, and you've likely used recycled paper as well. But have you ever wondered how today's tossed-away junk mail becomes tomorrow's pizza boxes?

If so, you'll want to check out the new video that was recently released on the NYC Sanitation YouTube channel. The video was made by Michael Anton, the city's Department of Sanitation director of photography, and consists of 5,902 different images stitched together to show how New York collects, transports, and converts tons of waste paper every year.

Instead of delving deeply into the topic, however, the video is more of an "art of trash" style piece. The background music, Duke Ellington's "Limbo Jazz," keeps the mood light even though the video is full of heavy equipment and even heavier-looking wads of waste. Still, it's a fascinating glimpse at all the stages and logistics involved in just one city's efforts to keep paper out of landfills by giving it a useful form over and over again.

About the author

Freelancer Michael Franco writes about the serious and silly sides of science and technology for Crave and other pixel and paper pubs. He's kept his fingers on the keyboard while owning a B&B in Amish country, managing an eco-resort in the Caribbean, sweating in Singapore, and rehydrating (with beer, of course) in Prague. E-mail Michael.


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