Total and Per Capita Municipal Solid Waste Materials Recycled

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    Total and Per Capita Municipal
    Solid Waste Materials Recycled

Explanation of Indicator
The Solid Waste Management Act (SWMA) of 1988 requires a 30 percent reduction in the municipal solid
waste (MSW) stream through recycling for each county by the end of 1994. No more than half of that
goal may be met by reducing yard trash, white goods, construction and demolition debris, and tires. In
addition, a majority of the newspaper, aluminum cans, glass, and plastic bottles must be offered for

This indicator identifies the degree to which the public is improving in recycling efforts and is meeting the
30 percent goal established in the SWMA. It also provides an analysis of how much material, per person,
is being recycled. When compared to how much waste is being generated for each person, this indicator
presents a revealing picture of the extent to which we are justifiably tagged as the "throw away society."
Looking at material recycled from an individual perspective presents an alternative view and promotes
individual ownership and solution-searching for the solid waste problem.

Some historical information (for the years 1976, 1980, 1986) is available from A Profile and Directory of
the Recycling Industry in Florida 1981 and The Marketing of Selected Secondary Raw Material in
Florida 1977, Profile and Directory. Information on MSW is available in the Solid Waste Management
Annual Report to the legislature beginning with 1988. For information you can contact Peter Goren,
Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Waste Reduction Section, at 2600 Blair Stone Road,
Mail Station 4570, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-2400, or at (904) 488-0300.

Data Characteristics
Recyclables from the MSW are compiled annually. Industry material processing and consumption totals
are collected every 5-10 years, statewide and on a county-by-county basis. This information is available
in hard copy format from each county, and statewide totals can be obtained from the Solid Waste
Management Annual Report. There are no additional costs associated with this indicator.

Overall Assessment
This is a critical indicator concerned with revealing the progress the state is making in recycling material
from the solid waste stream. Historical data for industrial consumption of recyclables, such as ferrous
and non-ferrous metals is available prior to 1988. Annual data beginning in 1988 is only available for
recyclables from the MSW stream. Thus it appears there was a substantial drop in materials recycled in
1988 when in reality the issue is dealing with two different sources of information. In addition, future
information on materials recovered from MSW will be available each year whereas industry figures will
continue to only be available every 5-10 years.

                          Strategic Assessment of Florida's Environment (SAFE)
Analysis of Indicator
There has been ant increase, over the four year period of record, in the tonnage of materials recycled in
the state. From 1990 to 1993, there has been a 135 percent increase in the tons of material recycled.
During the period of 1990 to 1993 there has been significant and steady increase in the tonnage of
material recycled on a per capita basis. From 1990 to 1993 there has been a 117 percent increase in the
average amount of recycled material for each Floridian. This is equivalent to an increase of about 117
pounds per capita.

                               Tons of Materials Recycled
                Million Tons

           7                                                                        6.6

           6                                                     5.4




                      1990               1991                   1992            1993

                                            State Fiscal Year

                   Tons Per Capita of Material Recycled

         0.40                              0.32

         0.30           0.23



                      1990              1991               1992              1993

                                           State Fiscal Year

                         Strategic Assessment of Florida's Environment (SAFE)