Where’s My Recycling?

March 28, 2019

Interesting question … Let’s take a little journey through the world of recycling and see why it’s such a hot topic these days, shall we?

When you throw your recycling items into those blue recycling bins, those items eventually make their way to a sorting facility where they get sorted out from items that go to landfill. After that, the recyclables are shipped thousands of miles away to other countries! Shocking, right? We know! The United States ships most of its recycling to China where plastics are made into manufacturing goods. But in order to focus on growing other industries instead, the Chinese government has banned and started enforcing stricter rules.

So with the new ban in place, trash and recycling companies in the United States are left with a dilemma. One option? They could sort trash the way China requires them to, but that would require more employees, which would increase costs and, ultimately, fees for customers like us. A second option? The US could ship the recycling to another country, but not all countries have the necessary systems in place like China does. A third option is to stop recycling altogether, and as awful as that sounds, that’s what some cities are doing; their recyclables go directly to landfill instead!

Can you think of a way for the United States to solve its recycling problem without costing the country more money?