The controversy surrounding China’s recent decision to tighten standards for incoming recyclable goods is not seriously affecting the recycling of construction and demolition (C&D) materials, according to the C&D Recycling Association.
The so-called “National Sword” initiative affects plastics, mixed paper and cardboard (fiber) normally from packaging materials. As a percentage of C&D usually plastics and fiber make up less than 1% of the total weight of recyclables recovered. The remaining recovered materials, commonly concrete, sheetrock, wood and metals have local and domestic markets or in the case of metals are shipped to other counties besides China.
Because C&D is not affected by China’s actions, its recycling rates should stay steady in the face of changes going on with other traditional curbside collected commodities. Hence, governmental entities concerned that their recycling rates are going to be reduced should strongly consider C&D recycling as a way to keep those recycling rates up.
“By weight, C&D materials are the largest waste stream in North America,” says Troy Lautenbach, Lautenbach Recycling, and President of the CDRA. “And because the National Sword actions don’t affect the C&D industry like it does our fellow recyclers, state and local officials should look to C&D to maintain strong recycling rates and continue to market materials locally instead of internationally.”
For more information about the recycling of construction and demolition materials, contact the CDRA at firstname.lastname@example.org; 866-758-4721.