This page offers a wealth of information and links to various resources including:
- Benefits of Recycling
- Tools for Recycling Programs
- Recycling Program Models
- Waste Reduction Resources
- Public Outreach
Benefits of Recycling
You will need Adobe Reader to view some of the files on this page. See EPA's PDF page to learn more.
Puzzled About Recycling Value? Look Beyond the Bin (PDF) (16 pp, 317K)
This publication documents the benefits of recycling, including economic development and sustainable resource use.
Every stage of a product's life cycle—extraction, manufacturing, distribution, use, and disposal—indirectly or directly contributes to the concentration of greenhouse gases (GHGs) in the atmosphere and affects the global climate. Waste prevention and recycling offer significant potential for decreasing GHG emissions.
Tools for Recycling Programs
Local government officials need to know what solid waste management really costs. Full cost accounting (FCA) provides a common-sense approach to identifying and assessing the cost of managing solid waste operations, and aiding decision-makers with short and long-term program planning to help identify measures for streamlining and improving operations.
This guide provides local planners with a better understanding of cost-saving methods for collecting residential recyclables.
Recycling Program Models
In March 2000, the Board presented the "Innovations" video conference to showcase successful recycling and waste reduction programs developed by local and regional jurisdictions to achieve California's 50 percent waste diversion goals. The programs featured in the video conference were reviewed and analyzed, and 24 studies were prepared to highlight successful model programs in reuse, recycling, composting, and other areas of waste management. These programs can be examples for other cities, counties, and regional agencies.
Hundreds of millions of dollars have been invested in recycling by both the public and private sector during the past decade. However, the programs that were developed in the late 1980s and early- to mid-1990s have begun to be replaced by the next generation of curbside recycling programs.
Recycling for residents of multifamily dwellings (MFD) poses a challenge for many communities. MFD residents can generate a large amount of a community’s residential waste and are often left out of community curbside recycling programs.
Local governments can raise awareness for and increase participation in their recycling programs by performing outreach and designing a recycling program with community diversity in mind.
This report, provided by the Natural Resources Defense Council, highlights New York City's recycling program.
Waste Reduction Resources
WasteWise is a flexible program that allows partners to design their own waste reduction programs tailored to their needs, benefiting their bottom line and the environment. Many resources on how to set up a waste reduction program are provided.
Local governments define the economics of solid waste in their areas. Through their policies, laws, regulations, rate structures, fees, and taxes, local governments can have a tremendous impact on what is "economic" to do in their community.
INFORM's Community Waste Prevention Toolkit is a resource that can help ommunity leaders and grassroots environmental organizations across the U.S. design and implement effective solid waste prevention programs in their towns and cities.
This publication is valuable to any community wanting to implement source reduction initiatives, as well as to policy makers and community leaders hoping to better understand the opportunities for source reduction and reuse at the local level.
This report summarizes PAYT programs for various communities in the southern U.S.
Affiliated with the United States Conference of Mayors, MWMA, is dedicated to, and driven by, the needs of municipal solid waste directors, environmental commissioners, and public works professionals.
An online resource for consumers, businesses, and recycling coordinators for plastic bag and film recycling.