Update On Plastic Recycling Changes In Logan

Jan 10, 2020

According to the Center for Biological Diversity, only one percent of plastic bags are recycled.

Seven months ago the city of Logan stopped accepting plastics number 3 through 7 for recycling. Emily Malik, Logan's Conservation Coordinator, said the change in the amount of plastic waste delivered to the Logan landfill since then is relatively insignificant.

“We actually haven’t really noticed,"  Malik said. "We get nearly three hundred tons a day. Even a one or two percent increase in the plastics being disposed of, or even a ten percent increase, wouldn’t really be a noticeable difference.”

Mountain Fiber Insulation, the company that buys and processes the city’s plastic waste, told The Herald Journal at the time of the reduction that they could still process plastics 3 through 7, but it was no longer profitable.

Since May, the Logan City Council has not taken any steps to try to ameliorate this issue. Councilman Tom Jensen said the council has been preoccupied with other plastics related issues.

“I think we’ve been focused on the single-use plastic bag," Jensen said. "That passed. We’re going to reduce plastic waste significantly with the county-wide plan, an incentive program for businesses. Those companies that ignore it will pay a premium, and it will be a significant premium.”

The city-wide legislation to reduce plastic bag use is set to go into effect on April 22 of this year, but may be rescinded if the county-wide initiative is adopted following a one-year education program that ends in March. Malik welcomes any change that will reduce the number of plastic bags brought to the landfill.

“Plastic bags are difficult in the recycling stream because they end up getting caught in equipment a lot and blowing away, but also they’re difficult to store and ship and you have to have really large quantities of plastic bags," Malik said. "It’s not always feasible for a county our size to collect those for recycling.”