Plastics should be burned cleanly and not recycled

I would appreciate a real “nitty gritty” article by an investigative reporter that uses other sources other than Herald columnist Michelle Metzler to address the dirty secrets of recycling on the West Coast.

Do readers understand the following to be true? When China was accepting most of our plastic sent for processing, the plastic was being burned out in the open. The documentary “Plastic China” shows what plastic processing looked like there.

If the brokers find other buyers for our plastics, the processing will probably include open burning. The East Coast uses domestic processors, which include state-of-the-art incinerators that do not pollute and generate energy, but they are saturated and will not accept our plastics.

It would take approximately 10 years to build our own incinerators due to all the regulations, environmental and otherwise, permitting, and building plus securing the financing.

Recycling adds more trucks, fuel and emissions to the environment.

Looking in recycle containers along our streets, in public spaces, at apartment complexes and businesses, citizens will see most have cross contamination. It is a huge problem.

In the meantime, I will continue to take corrugated cardboard, mixed paper, aluminum, tin and glass to the transfer station recycling center on my own, but the plastic goes in the trash. It is safer there.

Debbie McPherson


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