jeudi 3 février 2011

EPA releases 2009 waste disposal data

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has released its annual report for 2009 on municipal solid waste in the U.S., which includes a wealth of information on national recycling and composting trends. In 2009, Americans generated about 243 million tons of trash and recycled and composted 82 million tons of this material, equivalent to a 33.8% recycling rate. On average, Americans recycled and composted 1.46 lb of their individual waste generation of 4.34 lb per person per day.

The recycling rates of packaging materials were as follows:
  • More than 66% of steel packaging (mostly cans) was recycled.
  • About 72% of paper and paper¬board containers and packaging was recycled, including 81% of all corrugated boxes. • The recycling rate for aluminum packaging was about 38%, including almost 51% of aluminum beverage cans.
  • Around 31% of glass containers was recycled
  • About 22% of wood packaging—mostly wood pallets—was recovered.
  • Almost 14% of plastic containers and packaging was recycled, mostly from soft drink, milk, and water bottles. Plastic bottles were the most recycled plastic products. Recovery of high-density polyethylene natural (white translucent) bottles was estimated at about 29%. PET bottles and jars were recovered at 28%.

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