EPA recognizes the importance and impact of recycling, which contributes to American prosperity and the protection of our environment. The United States has made great progress on recycling, growing from a rate of less than 7 percent in 1960 to 35 percent in 2015 for municipal solid waste. In addition to helping to protect the environment by keeping valuable materials out of landfills, the U.S. recycling industry is an important economic driver and provides more than 757,000 jobs and $6.7 billion annually in tax revenues. There is opportunity for an even greater contribution, as the most recent data from 2015 show that materials worth $9 billion are thrown away each year.
On this 21st annual America Recycles Day 2018, we celebrate the progress we have made as a nation on recycling as we work to improve the recycling system to tackle 21st century challenges.
Read the full booklet, below.You may need a PDF reader to view some of the files on this page. See EPA’s About PDF page to learn more.
- Recycling: Protecting the Environment and Growing the Economy booklet, November 2018 (PDF)(32 pp, 18 MB, 11/15/2018)