Washington's recycling rate increases

The Department of Ecology says that our state’s recycling rate increased to 49 percent last year. That is its highest rate ever. Pretty awesome especially since the nationwide average was 34 percent in 2010.


In the last few years, we've seen more laws put into place that have promoted greater participation in recycling and an expansion with the types of materials that can be recycled in our state. I'm betting that pretty soon we'll reach the 50 percent mark – or even higher!

From the Department Of Ecology:

Washington residents are recycling more and throwing away less. The total amount of municipal waste recycled by state residents increased by more than 540,000 tons in 2010, up 14 percent from 2009. The total amount of waste disposed from households and businesses has been decreasing through the recession, and in 2010 that trend continued. Disposal dropped by about 65,000 tons or 1 percent in 2010.

The amount of waste diverted from disposal declined slightly from 54.8 percent in 2009 to 54.3 percent in 2010. This is because we are disposing of construction and demolition related materials that could be recycled. While the amount of construction and demolition related materials diverted from landfills increased, even more was disposed, causing the overall diversion rate to go down.

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