plastic inconvenient, not economical to recycle : environment: there's too much trash and not enough demand. different chemical compositions make sorting expensive. - colored glass water bottles
Like in the middle
The old businessman whispered the famous "word" to Dustin Hoffman in "graduate", and the plastic industry claims that recycling has a bright future.
But environmental activists and recycling officials are just as cynical as Hoffman college graduates, who ignore career advice.
Major cities such as Philadelphia and NewarkJ.
Recycling of plastic has been stopped.
From mustard bottles to yogurt cups, to meat bags, almost everything is thrown away or burned.
Critics hope the government will act to speed up progress.
Brooke Nash, executive director of Solana recycling, said: "Plastics are the root of most recycling companies . "
Collect recyclable items from four cities in Southern California in San Diego.
"The city wants the project to transfer as much material as possible from the landfill, but it's a sum of money --
Losers all around.
"The problem is simple: too much garbage and weak demand.
But the solution is not simple.
Roadside projects inspired by environmental enthusiasm have expanded to more than 4,000 communities.
40 states require full recycling.
But these projects are set up without knowing if the company will accept garbage as raw materials for new products. Most didn't.
The lack of demand has reduced the average household waste tons available to communities from $100 per ton in 1988 to $35 per ton last year.
The problem with plastic is particularly serious.
Despite the government's push for recyclingS.
The factory actually increased the production of plastic made of raw material-
Oil and Gas-In recent years.
The original price fell to lower the price of recycled plastic resin.
The community may need $1,000 per ton to collect, sort and transport plastics, 10 times as much as they can get.
Nevertheless, the cost of recycled resin is 10% higher than the original plastic, which makes it unreasonable for manufacturers to use plastic waste in new products.
Jane witherridge, vice president of strategic planning at WMX Technologies Inc. , said: "There is a regulatory authorization to transfer these materials from waste logistics, but there is no corresponding authorization to use it . "
It is the largest collection of recyclable items on the roadside in the United States.
With impressive success stories, officials have praised to some extent the efforts of millions of Americans to collect and sort out household waste on the roadside.
There are a lot of things that will eventually be recycled.
For example, the recovery rate is about 70% of the aluminum cans, nearly half of the iron cans, 43% of the newspapers and
Third of all glass packaging.
There are also recycling problems with some other garbage.
For example, clear and colored glass creates a sorting headache because it cannot be mixed.
The laggard is plastic. About 6.
According to the plastics industry, 5% of plastic packaging was recycled in 1992.
But most of this is plastic beverage bottles, mainly due to the repeated use of national bottle laws.
The second category includes translucent milk and water bottles.
The whole situation has created a huge backlog.
In Los Angeles and New York City, for example, plastic waste towers at garbage collectors processing plants have sprung up.
More inconvenient recyclers have the same properties as plastic convenience consumers ---
Light and diverse.
In Philadelphia, officials dropped plastic waste from roadside projects in November 1992 because they thought plastic waste accounted for half of the space of garbage trucks, but only 5% of the weight.
This means the driver needs to work extra overtime.
"We drive around with air," said Tom Klein, director of recycling education and promotion in Philadelphia . ".
"The key is not whether it can be recycled ---
My sofa is recyclable. -
The key is whether it can be collected and recycled at cost
In addition, plastic has different chemical components, which makes classification expensive.
Some packages have more than one plastic and another classification problem.
The plastics industry says it is promoting recycling for $1.
Investment of 2 billion from 1990 to 1995.
In an innovation, manufacturers can now make their own plastic soda bottles with extruded bottoms without the need for rigid bases of different plastics.
Heinz's tomato sauce bottle was redesigned with PET or polybendiester, a resin that is easier to recycle for use in soda bottles.
But environmental groups say plastic manufacturers-
Including oil companies mining oil in the plastic they produce. -
To meet the surge in demand for plastic packaging, more time has been spent processing raw materials.
"Economics doesn't make sense, we think, fundamentally, manufacturers have to be responsible for their packaging," says Lance King . ", California outreach director in Sacramento against waste.
"If the private sector does not act, we believe this will lead to mandatory rules," King said . " He refers to national legislation that requires at least recycled resin to be contained in new plastics.
In fact, the way to handle plastic is cheaper.
In some parts of the country, there is excess garbage.
However, people prefer recycling than burying or burning garbage.
Many companies created with recycling enthusiasm were disappointed. Milwaukee-based Poly-
Anna Plastics, for example, believes it has the perfect recipe for success: sell the community plastic recycling bins made of old laundry detergent bottles for roadside projects.
But the local government is not because of Poly.
Anna bins are more expensive than garbage bins without garbage.
"We have lost most of our big bids," said Poly . "
President Anna Marty Forman
Recycling systems in North America were forced to shut down Fort Edward. Y.
Chairman Robert Barber said the plastic processing plant was too expensive to operate last year.
Environment of California Chino
Ceo Michael Kopulsky said that the West's largest plastic processor had just made ends meet after three years of operation because it could not get a loan to buy more equipment and generate more revenue.
Even established companies have withdrawn. Wellman Inc.
The largest old plastic water bottle processors in the United States have stopped other packaging such as milk and juice cans because they are not profitable.
Some communities have declared broader success.
Minneapolis sells recycled packaging such as artificial butter barrels and yogurt containers to recyclers who make them into new packaging, carpets and landscape bricks.
About 100 communities in western Massachusetts also classify and collect less common recycled plastics.
However, these and other pilot projects depend on government and industry subsidies compared to the glass, aluminum and paper marketssufficient.
A sign of progress: more products that increase the demand for garbage.
Patagonia sells a polyester sweater made from 100% used water bottles.
P & G.
Make laundry detergent bottles from 100% plastic waste.
The federal government has allocated $1.
2 million for the development of technologies that help to invest more recycled materials in consumer goods.
"This is a hand --
Insist on people using recycled materials.
The state has not made significant efforts to do so, "said Catherine Mead, spokesman for the national recycling Union, which consists of commercial and government recyclers.