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New Yorkers are awful at recycling, new study shows

Will Gleason
Written by
Will Gleason

A new study has found that when it comes to recycling, New Yorkers are complete trash.

The report, conducted by Transform Don’t Trash NYC, collected data from 30 city waste and recycling facilities across the five boroughs to paint a pretty bleak picture of Gothamites’ disposal habits (especially when they're at work). 

Over the last year, 200,000 additional tons of garbage was sent to landfills, largely due to a shrinking commercial recycling rate. Currently, only about 21 percent of waste being collected from businesses and offices is being recycled, the report shows. My fellow New Yorkers, that’s a whopping one-third of other leading U.S. cities. *grimace emoji*

That declining commercial recycling rate has resulted in a 22 percent increase since 2015 of commercial waste in the city’s landfills. And that growing waste, and decrease in recycling, is happening across the board. Action Environmental, the city’s largest hauler, recycled 23 percent less material total at its Bronx recycling facility in 2017 than it did the year prior.

So, I don't know, maybe start a push to make your workplace a bit more green if you're noticing some bad habits? If these trends persist, the city is going to have a pretty hard time meeting its target of sending zero waste to landfill by 2030 and reducing emissions by 80 percent by 2050.

Though at least plastic straws may not be adding to the problem for much longer.

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