• Login

Same Day Appointments Available! Book Online and Save $20!

The Facts and Figures You Should Know America’s Recycling

The Facts and Figures You Should Know America’s Recycling

Landfill pic for midwest guest article.jpg

You probably don't realize the amount of waste you generate in just one day, but between food scraps, product packaging, and used paper, each and every one of us adds our fair share to the nation's trash pile.


Automobile and electronic waste builds up quickly as well. New technologies hit the market and we carelessly toss out our old models in favor of something new and shiny. But what happens to our abandoned iPhones and flat screen TVs?

If we’re not being mindful (and many of us are not), our old products are simply thrown into a landfill to collect dirt and rust for all of eternity. Sure, we have our recycling programs, but are they really as effective as we’d like them to be? According to data compiled from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), we could do a lot more to reduce waste and improve our national recycling rate.

The EPA tracks all of the different recycling initiatives at work across the country. Every year they put together a comprehensive report detailing the efforts and results related to municipal solid waste generation, recycling, and trash disposal. This report is called “Advancing Sustainable Materials Management: Facts and Figures.” Let’s take a look at the latest iteration, which draws on data from 2013.

The EPA's 2013 "Advancing Sustainable Materials Management: Facts and Figures" Report

In the year 2013, Americans generated roughly 254 million tons of trash, which was 3 million more tons than the year before. In the report, the EPA calculated that this total amounted to an average of 4.4 pounds of trash per person each day.

Of the 254 million tons of trash produced in 2013, only 87 million tons of that material was either recycled or composted. This puts the country’s recycling rate at 34.3%. Experts say that 34% is actually a strong figure. It means that per person, 1.12 pounds of the 4.4 pounds of generated waste was recycled or composted.

Looking Forward

The U.S. has maintained this 34% recycling rate since 2009, which shows that our recycling efforts have been consistent and sustainable. However, the EPA and other environmental and recycling groups are encouraging the American public to increase these efforts.

One of the greatest challenges facing any recycling campaign is convenience and cost-efficiency. To make the recycling process easier, safer, and more economically viable, Midwest Industrial Supply Inc. offers solutions that improve working conditions and lower harmful emissions during the automobile and electronic shredding process.


The Facts and Figures You Should Know America’s Recycling


Try Our Pricing Estimator

Our convenient and easy-to-use online pricing estimator makes getting an estimate* for your junk removal job fast and simple.