Trash is down, recycling is up, questions remain

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copyright the Chronicle September 14, 2016

by Elizabeth Trail

A little over a year after Vermont’s comprehensive recycling law went into effect, opinions are mixed on how mandatory recycling is working out in the Northeast Kingdom, even among people who work most closely with trash and recycling.

According to state figures, the amount of trash that is going into the landfill is down about 5 percent this year.

Before Act 148 went into effect on July 1 last year, the amount of trash was growing by about 2 to 3 percent a year.

But Paul Tomasi, director of the Northeast Kingdom Waste Management District (NEKWMD), isn’t convinced that the decline is a result of the new recycling law.

“When the economy is not so strong, people produce less trash,” he said. “I’m not clear in my mind that it has anything to do with the law. I think it’s a combination of macroeconomic conditions and Act 148.”

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