A New Era of Recycling In San Francisco

The international market for recycled plastic has undergone a dramatic change within the final year. Bay Space recycling corporations have a dilemma: they will not merely ship vinyl to China. “China, which formally was the biggest purchaser for recycled plastics, is just not shopping for anymore,” stated Robert Reed, spokesman for San Francisco waste administration firm Recology. “We have to seek out new markets.”

CBS’s 60 Minutes naturally featured Recology in a narrative about plastics and the rising, perpetual drawback of plastics. Reed says they’ve discovered some new clients however there’s a catch. “We’re additionally having to ship a few of it to Southeast Asia, to Indonesia, so it’s touring additional and that’s extra transportation value,” he mentioned. Some of the sturdy supplies ever made, plastic lasts years earlier than breaking down. Now new plastic is ending up on the planet’s oceans.

Reed says, “The actual answer is not to create so many plastics to start with.” The opposite a part of the answer: expertise to assist meet the brand new requirements of cleaner recycled plastics. Recology has a brand new, excessive-velocity course of involving state-of-the-artwork optical sorters and excessive-velocity computer systems to acknowledge plastics from different stuff. “We’re the primary firm in North America to order these machines,” mentioned Reed.

Nonetheless, within the testing part, the objective is to get these 14 million dollar machines online earlier than Christmas. Recology says utilizing steel water bottles, selecting merchandise with glass packaging on the retailer, and merely refusing to accept plastic meals containers is a step in the correct course to a cleaner planet.

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