NEW YORK (Scrap Register): The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) has celebrated America Recycles Day by applauding all individuals who make a strong effort to recycle as part of daily life, and encouraging all to learn more about recycling and the industry. America Recycles Day, a national initiative of Keep America Beautiful, takes place every November 15 in an effort to promote and celebrate recycling in the U.S.
“Each year America Recycles Day provides us with an important reminder not only of the need to recycle, but also the positive impact the recycling industry has on the environment, energy savings, and the economy,” said Robin Wiener, president of ISRI.”
Recycling is the first link in the manufacturing supply chain. Just last year, the U.S. recycling industry transformed more than 130 million metric tons of scrap metal, paper, plastic, glass, textiles, rubber, and electronics into specification grade commodities for use in new products.
While 70 percent of the recycled commodities processed last year in the United States was consumed at home, the global scrap market also provides a useful outlet for our nation’s excess scrap supply. U.S. export sales of recycled scrap significantly benefit the U.S. trade balance. In 2015, the United States exported more than 37 million metric tons of scrap commodities, valued at $17.5 billion. In fact, since 2000, net exports of United States scrap have made a positive contribution to our balance of trade amounting to more than $210 billion.
Recycling facilities provide jobs all across the country. In fact, last year the U.S. scrap recycling industry directly and indirectly supplied more than 470,000 Americans with employment. These workers earned $30.8 billion in wages and benefits. The industry paid $11.2 billion in direct federal, state, and local taxes.
Recycling conserves our limited natural resources and reduces greenhouse gas emissions by significantly saving the amount of energy needed to manufacture the products that we buy, build, and use every day. The energy saved by recycling may then be used for other purposes, such as heating our homes and powering our automobiles.