It is official. The total weight of paper and packaging materials recycled in 2019 is 519,375 kg or 519 metric tons or tonnes. This is 9 tonnes more than last year’s record of 510 tonnes. The previous record was 500 tonnes in 2007.
That is the big picture. It is always important to look at the details for a better picture.
The numbers for the different materials are: Aluminum 6,413 kg, Commingled materials (sorted in Winnipeg) 131,912 kg, Corrugated cardboard 286,134 kg, Glass 50,972 kg, Office paper 35,521 kg and Books and other items 8,423 kg. (1,000 kg makes one tonne.)
The biggest increase was 13.3 tonnes in corrugated cardboard. Most cardboard comes from businesses, so more are recycling. There is also more cardboard coming from homes with online shopping.
The two materials that decreased last year continued the trend in 2019.
Office paper was down one and a half tonnes.
The drop in commingled materials excluding aluminum continues. This is mostly the recyclables coming from homes. It has consistently been down by 11 – 12 tonnes for the year since July.
This category dropped when compared to the previous year for the first time in 2018.
We obviously did not achieve our goal of reversing this trend in 2019.
I have written about reasons before including fewer homes recycling, less paper (fiber) materials and people reducing how much waste they produce.
I think there is room to reverse this trend even if less fiber products and homes creating less waste are the cause.
There are still many homes and work places who are not recycling.
We encourage nonrecyclers to make it a habit in 2020.