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RE: [GreenYes] reply on the cost of landfilling v. recycling
Is this discussion changed at all when the cost of Recycling
collection/processing is more than the cost of garbage
collection/processing/disposal?  This would take the "demon landfill" out of
the picture, and suggest a discussion on recycling cost
effectiveness...............

-----Original Message-----
From: Blair Pollock [mailto:bpollock@co.orange.nc.us]
Sent: Thursday, February 21, 2002 8:32 AM
To: greenyes@grrn.org
Subject: [GreenYes] reply on the cost of landfilling v. recycling


I suppose the cost of recycling may get close to the cost of landfilling
combined with waste COLLECTION. That's my experience analyzing several years
of data in my community, Orange Co. NC. Without combining the cost of
collection with landfilling, it's not even close.  Here landfill cost is
around $40/ton and the cost of recycling ranges from about $100 to $180/ton
depending on program e.g. dropoff is ~ $100 curbside is about $180. If we
were able to capture some of the + externalities from use of recyclables
such as reduced resource inputs to make products and put a value on those
(how much is a pound of avoided air pollutants worth?) then costs would
generally be in the same ballpark. We should not make spurious claims for
the immediate economic benefits of recycling without being able to account
for job creation and + environmental externalities in the calculation. Let's
not oversell recycling. Now waste reduction on the other hand almost always
beats the cost of landfil!
ling, etc. 

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