More recycling woes

The green blog mentioned in November how the economic recession is driving down the demand for recycled materials. ABC News recently reported how prices for all kinds of recycled goods – cardboard, tin cans, glass, plastic, etc. – crashed in just the past two months.

The report cited for example the price of cardboard falling from $160/ton to $25/ton, and tin from cans is now priced at $5 from $200 just a couple of months ago.

So, here’s the green dilemma. Even if we want to recycle some of our waste, who would want to recycle them if nobody will buy the recycled raw materials? The recyclers either have to let them pile in their storage or throw them in the landfill. With crude oil at $42/bbl and natural gas at $5.8 /MMBtu (down 11.1 cents as of January 7 according to ICIS), virgin raw materials especially plastic is very much competitive to those of recycled alternatives.

You can watch more about the current recycling woes in the video below. Just ignore the few seconds advertising…

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