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How Much Recyclable Waste is Sent to Landfills Each Year?

Last updated 4 years ago

Each year, businesses, families, and individuals in the United States generate staggering amounts of solid waste. Though many organizations now spread awareness of sustainable consumption practices, many people still do not practice green waste management. Dumpsters are filled with a lot of recyclable waste every day. Here are some things you should know about waste streams and recycling practices.

Americans Don’t Recycle Nearly as Much as They Should

In 2009, Americans generated 243 million tons of solid waste, but recycled barely one quarter of it. Recycling rates here trail behind many other countries, such as Switzerland, South Korea, and Denmark, and we still send more than half of our trash to landfills.

Bottles and Cans Add Up

In one recent year, Americans threw away about 55 billion aluminum cans, or enough to fill a football stadium. All this aluminum could have been recycled and made into new cans or used to make windows, ladders, or a variety of other items.

Construction Projects Generate a Lot of Waste

You have probably noticed the huge dumpsters placed at construction sites or outside homes during remodeling jobs. In total, construction debris makes up almost 30% of the total municipal wasted produced across the nation each year. Much of this material is recyclable wood, but not every project manager ensures that their dumpsters empty at recycling facilities.

Incentives Are in Place to Encourage Recycling

Your building is eligible for varying levels of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification, depending on what percentage of waste you manage to divert from landfills. For commercial companies and landlords, LEED certification can bring increased business from green-minded clients and tenants. 

If you need to dispose of large quantities of debris or waste materials, call of New Jersey at (888) 772-7368. We offer sustainable waste disposal services to residential and business clients, including delivery and removal of dumpsters in various sizes for any scale of project.


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