- A new report notes that 44% of waste from Austin, TX sent to a landfill could be recycled. Austin Resource Recovery’s Waste Characterization Study delves into the amount of recyclables and compost-ready waste disposed of through the city’s curbside recycling.
- Organic waste such as food waste, yard waste, wood and other organic materials make up 46% of the waste Austin disposes of in a landfill. About 90% of waste now sent to a landfill from Austin could be recycled or composted, the study reports.
- Of the recyclables the city sends to a landfill, 13% is recyclable plastic, 23% is recyclable paper, and 8% is recyclable metal and glass. Organic waste is the largest proportion of potentially usable waste deposited in a landfill from Austin, though the city began a voluntary program for compost collection in which 14,000 households participate.
Austin may not be very different from many cities in the U.S. in allowing so much potentially usable matter into landfills. With 90% of waste it sends to a landfill recyclable or compostable, the volumes of waste that could be diverted is staggering. The city is moving in a recycling-friendly direction with the study, and also with an educational outreach effort through which residents will get a recycling guide in the mail to help them increase the amount of recyclables they divert from a landfill.