Recycling in the United States - Statistics & Facts
Statistics and Facts about Recycling in the U.S.
According to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), recycling is the process of collecting and processing material that would otherwise be thrown away as trash and turning them into new products. One of the primary reasons that recycling is promoted and a desired process in the waste industry is due to its ability to reduce the strain on the environment. Recycling is one of the ways that society can simultaneously contribute to improving the environment, the economy, sustainable manufacturing and preventing waste polluting both terrestrial and marine environments. The benefits of recycling are simple but the effect they can have can be significant, which is why many countries continue support to support this practice and encourage their citizens to recycle their household waste.
On a nationwide level, the EPA oversees a variety of waste issues. These include the regulation of hazardous wastes, landfill regulations, and setting recycling goals. There is no federal law that mandates recycling, so recycling legislation is localized through city or state governments. Individual states and cities are responsible for management of waste and can create recycling goals or landfill bans of recyclable materials. The United States also has a national solid waste management law called the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), which creates a framework for management of hazardous and non-hazardous solid wastes.
Despite the high quantity of waste being discarded in over 1,900 landfills across the United States, the country’s recycling rates have been increasing since the 1960s. In 2013, about the country generated roughly 254 million tons of municipal solid waste .
Each year on November 15th Americans, celebrate “America Recycles Day” to encourage citizens to recycle and buy recycled products. America Recycles Day has been a program established by the national non-profit, Keep America Beautiful.
Photo: Wikipedia/cc, Krdan
|Waste generation and recycling in the U.S.||Statistic|
|U.S. municipal solid waste generation||258.5m t||Details →|
|U.S. municipal solid waste discards||166.93m t||Details →|
|Best North American city for recycling waste||San Francisco||Details →|
|Recycling of U.S. municipal solid waste||66.4 m t||Details →|
|Percent of Americans with curbside recycling||51%||Details →|
|U.S. waste industry||Statistic|
|Revenue of the U.S. solid waste industry||57.9bn USD||Details →|
|Projected size of U.S. market for waste management by 2020||139bn USD||Details →|
|Weight of recycled municipal solid waste||66.4m t||Details →|
|Value of recycled copper scrap||5.6bn USD||Details →|
|U.S. recycling rate||34%||Details →|
- U.S. - value of selected metals recycled from scrap 2014U.S. - value of selected metals recycled from scrap 2014
Value of selected metals recycled from scrap in the U.S. from in 2014, by metal (in million U.S. dollars)*
- U.S. e-waste recycling rates, by product type 2015+U.S. e-waste recycling rates, by product type 2015
Rate of electronic waste recycling in the U.S. in 2015, by product type
- Share of U.S population with beverage container recycling available by program 2016+Share of U.S population with beverage container recycling available by program 2016
Share of population with available beverage containers recycling in the United States in 2016, by program type
- Reported U.S. gold consumption 2007-2016Reported U.S. gold consumption 2007-2016
- Change in gold price from 1900 to 2016Change in gold price from 1900 to 2016
- Leading uranium consuming countries worldwide 2015Leading uranium consuming countries worldwide 2015
- U.S. municipal solid waste generation 1960-2014U.S. municipal solid waste generation 1960-2014
- Leading health and beauty care product categories in the U.S. 2015Leading health and beauty care product categories in the U.S. 2015