Recycling cuts back
November 18, 2017
Plastic and glass won’t be recovered
WALTERVILLE: “Effective December first our company will no longer take plastic or glass through our recycling program.” That’s not something she wanted to do, according to Cheri Fuller, who along with her husband Darin, owns McKenzie Disposal. They aren’t alone.
Last month Lane County let people know that due to disruptions in the global recycling markets it would not be accepting most plastics at the Glenwood Transfer Station in Eugene as well as at all the other outlying transfer sites.
“Lane County is currently unable to market these materials due to a forthcoming ban on imports of mixed recycled materials into China,” according to Waste Management Division Manager Daniel Hurley.
“These changes are temporary. We hope to resume collection of these materials in the coming months as markets adjust.”
The county ban includes all plastics except clear milk jugs. Other items like plastic bags are still accepted at major grocery stores that participate in a national program to recycle them into composite lumber at factories in the United States.
“Recycling works when we send good quality resources for remanufacture,” Hurley notes. “The Chinese import ban is due to the level of contamination in imported resource streams. Please do not ‘recycle’ anything other than what is described as recyclable on signs or instructions.
Unfortunately, the recycler McKenzie Disposal works with no longer accept both plastic or glass. Fuller suggests people take cloudy/white jugs and glass to either the Vida or McKenzie Bridge transfer sites. Their company still takles clean things like aluminum and tin cans, cardboard newspapers, junk mail and most papers ranging from phone books to egg cartons.
“We hope this ban is temporary,” she said. “we want to do recycling. It’s a little more work. You just have to do it right.”
More information about recycling is available at: lanecounty.org/waste. Details on the global market crisis affecting Oregon’s recycling system is posted at: alturl.com/ai998.
Image: Bales of plastic bound for overseas markets won’t be seen in Lane County in the foreseable future.
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