Start spreading the news: Plastic recycling increases in New York

The largest expansion of New York’s recycling efforts in a quarter of a century is underway, and it’s all about plastics!

Mayor Michael Bloomberg promised to expand New York’s recycling programme earlier on in the year, so as to achieve a 30% recycling rate – double the current level – by 2017.

Now, household recycling collections have expanded to encompass all rigid plastics. So old toiletries bottles, food containers and even toys can be thrown into the domestic recycling bins!

The famous city’s new recycling centre has increased capacity, and so is able to cope with more plastic waste. It will open later on in the year, in Brooklyn, and will not only help the city to be more eco-friendly, but also create 100 jobs.

Another positive result of Mr Bloomberg’s ambitious drive will be that 50,000 tonnes less waste per year will end up in landfill. Taxpayers will pay almost $600,000 less per year because the waste will not be exported; it is cheaper to recycle than it is to send waste to landfill.

The Mayor was clear about what the Big Apple’s residents can recycle now. He said:

“Starting today, if it’s a rigid plastic – any rigid plastic – recycle it. There is no more worrying about confusing numbers on the bottom of the container.”

Mayor Bloomberg’s plans for New York City will make for a greener Big Apple, out of which more people can take a bite! Recycling Lives welcomes the sustainability drive, which should have a significant effect on New York’s communities, especially with the creation of jobs at the new recycling facility.

Benefiting the community and the environment is at the heart of our commercial operations at the Recycling Lives social business. We have a strong commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility, ensuring that our activities add social value to the local economy and help communities to flourish.

We reuse and recycle as much scrap metal and other waste as possible, in order to avoid landfill. When it comes to plastics, we have gone really far, developing an innovative process to convert any polymer into beams for the construction industry. These provide a strong and sustainable alternative to wood.

All our commercial activities sustain the Recycling Lives social welfare charity, which supports homeless people to find work and accommodation. Residents undertake work placements with Recycling Lives, and some of them find permanent work with the social business or one of our commercial partners.