Green Party U.S. – Green Technology, Recycling & Alternative Energy News & Information

Is recycling worth the cost?

December 17, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

New York City is proposing an 18-month moratorium on recycling glass, plastic and aluminum in order to save an estimated $57 million for the cash strapped city.  Facing with a whopping $4.76 billion budget deficit, New York City proposal is making headlines and bringing in environmentalist as well as critics against each other.  Cities of Baltimore and Charleston, West Virginia are also proposing similar stoppages due to cost.

According to published reports glass, metal and plastics cost New York City $240 per ton to recycle.  For half the cost of that, it can throw them in landfills.  But the New York City cost may not hold true for other cities and depending on transportation cost, method of recycling, real estate prices and others cost may be less or more.  Another factor is the market price for paper, plastic and aluminum which are somewhat lower at this time.

Critics point out cost and other priorities warrant cities to stop recycling.  Additionally, they say trash generated within next 1,000 years would only fill 35-square miles in area, 100 feet deep.  Supporters of recycling say that we are not recycling for money, but to save the planet.  Americans are recycling third of their waste and 25 million Americans have access to recycling programs.

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