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From: Fred Friedman (FRIEDMAN.FRED@EPAMAIL.EPA.GOV)
Date: Tue Oct 20 1998 - 05:17:00 EDT


Date: Tue, 20 Oct 98 10:17 WET DST
From: FRIEDMAN.FRED@EPAMAIL.EPA.GOV (Fred Friedman)
Subject: Re: Recycling Problems (Brad Foster)

Oct. 19, 1998

Dear Brad Foster,

Without assuming comprehensiveness, here are the problems facing a potential recycler:

Markets: finding markets for materials despite economic fluctuations.
Supply: finding adequate supplies of specific materials with specific levels of contaminants
Organized Crime: long a mainstay of the solid waste transport business, there are areas of the country where these clowns enter recycling as well.
Public Perception: recycled materials are inferior, recycling is uneconomical and does nothing for the environment.
Journalists sponsored or supported or blatantly paid by anti-recycling industry: who influence public perception with occasional salvos against recycling in e.g. The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, not to mention your home town newspaper.
State and Federal regulations: these often discriminate against recyclers and recycling.
Finance Capital: Only recently has finance capital looked at recycling; instead it traditionally favors landfilling/incineration for MSW solutions.
Salaries: Low pay for low level recycling workers.
Procurement: Lack of business and institutional interest in buying recycled.

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