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November 2006

DEP awards $4.5 million to support recycling programs

New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection commissioner Lisa P. Jackson announced $4.5 million in grants to counties and municipalities to support local recycling programs.

“With New Jersey generating more than 20 million tons of solid waste every year, we need to do all we can to boost recycling rates,” said DEP commissioner Lisa P. Jackson.

The recycling grant awards are performance-based, requiring specific documentation of total material recycled during calendar year 2004, the latest annual statistics available for the state.

In 2004, New Jersey generated 21.7 million tons of solid waste, which includes not only glass, cans, plastic and newspapers from municipal waste, but also scrap iron, concrete, wood and other items from commercial waste. Of that total, 12 million tons or 55 percent was recycled with 9.7 million tons sent for disposal.

New Jersey is required to create and implement a Solid Waste Management Plan, which outlines the steps necessary to foster recycling at the state, county and local government levels. Currently, the municipal solid waste recycling rate is 34 percent. In January 2006, DEP revised the Plan to require counties to update their plans to identify strategies and enforcement measures that will increase recycling rates.

New Jersey’s recycling industry employs more than 27,000 people in New Jersey with total receipts valued at $5.9 billion annually.

To view the list of grant recipients, visit DEP’s website at www.nj.gov/dep/dshw/recycle/stats.htm.


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