Everyone Can

By Cedric Pendleton

In California, everyone is accustomed to separating their trash to take advantage of the rebates that one receives when you turn in plastic bottles, glass, etc. to a recycling center. It seems as though Californians are more progressive than the rest of the country. Are they? Let’s follow the money…

The state of California has less land mass for their landfills. Therefore, the tonnage rate for trash being charged to those who dispose of waste is higher. This essentially means that there is an incentive to recycling because the cost to run their business is lower. In other Metropolitan areas you see the same philosophy.

Let’s say the rate in California is $80 per ton. The south on the other hand has a vast amount of land and the rate that is being charged for waste tonnage is $20 per ton. So they throw everything in one place because it is cheap to do so. As a result, you find that many companies in the south are not motivated to recycle in order save them money. They are in the recycling business to create an additional revenue stream. There is nothing wrong with that.

When so many products can be derived from the reuse of an item, it just makes good sense to be a great steward. You not only save the environment, but can also earn a cent or two … or more in some areas.  For example, in some states you get reimbursed for bringing your own bag to the grocery store.  Find a center near you or learn about your community’s recycling efforts … and recycle!