After decades of earnest public-information campaigns, Americans are finally recycling. Airports, malls, schools, and office buildings across the country have bins for plastic bottles and aluminum cans and newspapers. In some cities, you can be fined if inspectors discover that you haven’t recycled appropriately.But now much of that carefully sorted recycling is ending up in the trash.For decades, we were sending the bulk of our recycling to China—tons and tons of it, sent over on ships to be made into goods such as shoes and bags and new plastic products. But in 2018, the country restricted imports of certain recyclables, including mixed paper—magazines, office paper, junk mail—and most plastics. Waste-management companies across the country are telling towns, cities, and counties that there is no longer a market for their recycling. These municipalities have two choices: pay much higher rates to get rid of recycling, or throw it all away.
Tuesday, December 10, 2019
The End of Recycling?
I've stated many times that I'm a conservationist. I don't like to waste things. If something can be reused or donated, I'm all for that. If it makes economic sense to recycle, I'm all for that, too. If not, we "recycle" only for secular-religious reasons: