When our town transfer station implemented state mandated “recycling” I joked to the town treasurer that we ought to get a rebate on our transfer station bumber stickers. She got really serious and told me she had to pay BFI $60,000 a year to haul the “recyclables”. Most of them went to a landfill in Michigan. That’s on top of the residents’ and town’s cost and hassle of handling the different bins.
I made a point of placing putrifying, unwashed catfood cans in the bins in July.
Who benefitted? Not the “environment”, we just moved from a local landfill to one a thousand miles away, which is clearly environmentally counterproductive. The beneficiary was BFI. For a lousy $60,000 a year they made the whole town jump through hoops. Of course they were aided and abetted by nitwits in the statehouse, including Bill Weld.
BTW, Ontario was doing the same thing, abluting themselves in an act of overarching moral preening, while shipping landfill to Michigan.
Here in our community it’s optional but costs more. We compost but don’t recycle. Our son’s girlfriend was disturbed by that and asked several times where to put her soda cans. My husband did his master’s thesis on recycling 35 years ago and told her more than once that it expends more energy to recycle aluminum that it does to generate it new from ore. Glass is made from sand and water. He does take plastic bags back to the grocery store and we don’t buy stuff in plastic bottles as a rule. The other conversation with son and his now former girlfriend is whether to burn at our farm out in the country. I burn old client files and we also burn a lot of brush. They thought we should shred the files. We point out that a truck burns fossil fuel to pick up the stuff, shred it, and then dump it in the land fill where big trucks push it around. We just burn it. Clear flame, little residue. Natural process.