Colorado’s recycling rate improves to 17.2%, but we’re producing more trash than ever |

Colorado’s recycling rate improves to 17.2%, but we’re producing more trash than ever

Tamara Chuang, Colorado Sun
Crews at Alpine's Altogether Recycling go through their daily process of sorting through mountains of recyclable materials on July 20, 2018 in Denver. (Kathryn Scott, Special to The Colorado Sun)

Colorado’s recycling rate has dramatically improved — but read this with a giant asterisk. 

We’re now at 17.2% for 2018, an increase from the prior year’s 12%, according to the latest “State of Recycling in Colorado” report produced by Eco-Cycle and the Colorado Public Interest Research Group. The difference was in how household recycling was tracked by the state between 2017 and 2018 (one includes some industrial debris; one doesn’t).

The other asterisk? Coloradans still generated 1.4 million tons more trash in 2018 than in 2017. 

“We need to stop producing as much waste and then we need to be recycling more as well,” said Kate Bailey, director of Eco-Cycle, the non-profit recycling organization in Boulder. “Our recycling rate is half the national average. We’re still way behind our peer states. There are signs that there’s momentum, and we’re moving in the right direction, but we really need to pick up the pace.”

Read more via The Colorado Sun.

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