The Center for Rural Pennsylvania reported data from the Department of Environmental Protection shows from 2010 to 2013, rural recycling declined by 145,100 tons, or 12 percent. Over the same period, urban recycling increased by 732,800 tons or 17 percent.
Pennsylvania residents and businesses recycled a little more than 1 million tons of plastic bottles, newspapers, aluminum cans, and other recyclables in 2013.
That amounts to about 628 pounds of recycled items per person.
Urban Pennsylvanians, however, recycled 5 million tons of items or 1,080 pounds per person. The most frequently recycled items among both groups were cardboard and paper.
The items that rural residents and businesses recycled in 2013 also included: 24,200 tons of newspaper, 22,300 tons of plastic, 15,400 tons of glass bottles, 5,200 tons of aluminum cans and 4,500 tons of e-waste, such as computers, other electronics.
Beaver, chester and Schuylkill counties had the highest number of pounds recycled per capita, each averaging more than 2,000 pounds per person.
Greene and McKean counties had the lowest number of pounds recycled per capita, with less than 50 pounds per person.(Reprinted from the December Township News.)