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I got a notification in the mail today.
My waste disposal company will be discontinuing all recycling services as of October 1. Beginning on that day everything (plastics, glass, metal, cardboard, paper etc.) is garbage and it is all going to the landfills.
I am not surprised. Local papers have been reporting this for two months as company after company, and town after town makes the same announcement.
The notices are all the same: the costs of recycling have spiraled out of control and can longer be borne.
a) A federal program that subsidized recycling programs has been eliminated.
b) State based programs that provided matching funds for that federal program have as a result been eliminated in more and more states.
c) The principle "buyer" of recyclable materials is China and that country has canceled nearly all of its contracts in response to U.S. Tariffs.
d) Regulations on manufacturing of materials made of glass, cardboard, plastic etc. that encouraged the use of recyclable materials have largely been abandoned or are not being enforced.
More fallout from the Trump Administration.
P.S. A particularly interesting comment for Ian Miller that widens the discussion. Here it is.
The basic problem for recycling is a lack of products that will earn a profit. In the 1970s I developed a technology that would convert mixed coloured polyethylene into a near white material that was almost as good as virgin, BUT the cost of doing this meant that new polyethylene from the oil companies would undercut it. So we switched to a cheaper route that would use only industrial packaging that had no colour, and that limped on for about twenty years, struggling to sell the product, until a fire broke out and the company took the insurance and decided to do something more profitable. Almost anything was. Actually, burying plastics is not the worst thing you could to, if it is deep enough - you are at least fixing carbon.