Recycling at all time high

Kitsap County’s recycling rate has reached its highest it has been in 20 years, according to a survey by the Washington State Department of Ecology.

In the last few years alone, the percentage of recyclable material collected at transfer stations and landfills has jumped 5 percent, from 45 to 49 percent since 2009.

That percentage means 25,000 tons more material recycled and a 2,000 ton decrease in garbage deposited in landfills, according to the report.

One explanation for the increased recycling activity could be families tightening their household budgets, according to Chris Piercy, Kitsap County recycling coordinator.

Families watching their dollars save money by downsizing their garbage containers or reducing the frequency of collection. Some are taking advantage of curbside recycling to cut down on their monthly garbage bills.

According to Piercy, there are plans in the works to keep this trend up and landfills uncluttered, including giving businesses incentives to recycle through recycling assistance and special recognitions for their efforts. The county will also expand its school cafeteria composting program in 2012.

“I am optimistic that the recycling rate will continue to push upward in Kitsap County,” said Piercy.

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