Letter to the Editor: Abiding law banning plastic and aluminum in landfills | Opinion

Thank you, Pamela Genant for your letter on July 7. Many people do not realize there is a law that makes discarding plastic and aluminum in the landfill a crime.

» Why are people not aware of this law? Why do we have a law if it is not enforced? I think that we should see signs on the roads and highways just like we see signs that littering is against the law. We should have signs at every convenience center and landfill of this fact. We are reminded often about the seatbelt law, why are we not reminded of this law? We should see signs above waste cans at public events and shopping centers, and always provide the recycling receptacle right next to the trash cans so people do not have to look too hard for the recycle bin.

» I don’t think there is any need for the “garbage police,” but there needs to be some incentive to get people to abide by this law. People with the recycle option in their weekly pickup should get some sort of credit for leaving their filled recycle bin out. Any resident outside the city should get a credit on taking the plastic and aluminum to the convenience centers. I read an article suggesting that if large retailers provided recycling of packaging material from their products, and provided a credit on other purchases, this could incentivize consumers to recycle. This would also require the suppliers of products to make their packaging recyclable. Just think what large retailers’ influence on the earth would mean.

» In a www.re3.org report, North Carolinians throw away more than $74,072,000 that’s 74 million dollars in aluminum cans each year. By recycling an aluminum can the state receives $1 per pound on average in revenue from the sale of aluminum cans

» In the same report, North Carolinians throw away more than $41,411,600, over 41 million dollars, in plastic each year. We are losing 20 cents per pound on average in revenue from the sale of PET and HDPE. Also, every year, North Carolinians throw away enough trash to circle the earth twice.

» We could be generating over $115 million in just aluminum and plastic sales revenue for the state. Not only revenue, but by saving space in our landfills, we are eliminating the need to buy more land to expand our landfills.

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