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PA Recycles Record 4.4 Million Tons in 2003
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Pennsylvanians recycled a record 4.45 million tons of municipal waste in 2003, according to reports filed by Pennsylvania counties.

In addition to the environmental gains of diverting waste from landfills, the economic benefits of recycling are estimated at more than $68 million.

The $68 million figure comes from an analysis of commodity value of 1.4 million tons of Pennsylvania’s 2003 recycling which totals more than $50 million. If the remaining 3.3 million tons of other materials were valued at even half this amount, the total would be more than $68 million.

This does not include the estimated value of avoided disposal, which can be calculated as more than $240 million at the estimated statewide average disposal cost of $54 per ton.

The Department of Environmental Protection made the latest recycling numbers available during a visit to the Blue Mountain Recycling in Philadelphia which uses a single-stream process that enables its recycling customers to easily combine all of their recyclables together in one container and then the company sorts it out.

The City of Philadelphia is partnering with Blue Mountain and RecycleBank to pilot a new curbside recycling program in the City that uses the single-stream process and incentives to promote participation.

So far, participation rates in the pilot are up significantly over City averages and the amount of recycled material collected per household have exceeded expectations.


4/22/2005

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