Statement Regarding the Improper Disposal of Recyclables by Certain Area Waste Haulers

It has come to our attention that a small number of area waste haulers are collecting recycle materials and then mixing them with trash for disposal.  We speculate that the reason they may be doing this is that the recycling markets have declined significantly.  Manufacturers are simply not buying recycled raw materials.  In mid-2008, SECCRA could sell our recyclables for $45 per ton.  Now we have to pay between $48 and $63 per ton to get our recycle outlets to take them.  

It is important to note that almost all the haulers in the area are doing the right thing.  We do not agree with the small number of haulers who are improperly disposing of recycling.  We understand that right now it is cheaper for them to landfill recyclables than it is to handle them properly.  But landfilling recycle materials wastes valuable landfill space causing landfills to fill up sooner than desired.

If you bring your recycling to one of our many drop off centers located in the area, please know that SECCRA is recycling it.  We use our own truck to pick up from these centers, and then transport them to the recyclers.  Yes, it is expensive for us to recycle too, but the landfill space gained is important, and it’s the right thing to do.  

If a load arrives at the landfill that contains recycling, we will do our best to separate it, and handle it properly.  This has always been our policy.  However, it is difficult to separate recycling after it is mixed with trash, as it requires a lot of manpower, and presents serious safety hazards for our employees, given that this has to take place around moving heavy equipment.  

If you notice that your hauler is improperly handling recyclables, please contact them directly and voice your concerns.  In addition, you should also contact your municipal officials.  Lastly, you can also contact the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, who regulates recycling in Pennsylvania.