The recycling industry in the US is facing a “nationwide crisis” as recycling facilities increasingly lose money and demand plummets for recyclables, Waste Management CEO David Steiner told the Washington Post.
The company’s recycling division posted a loss of nearly $16 million in the first quarter of the year, the newspaper reports. It has also shuttered almost 1 in 10 of its largest recycling facilities and Steiner says it may be forced to close even more in the next year.
Falling oil prices, a strong dollar and China’s slumping economy are to blame, as is an increasingly contaminated recycling stream caused, in part, by single-bin recycling programs.
Photo Credit: recycling facility via Shutterstock