Some Minnesota counties invest in long-term recycling model

Several counties in northwestern Minnesota are betting that recycling more and burning any remaining trash will be cheaper in the long run than burying everything that’s thrown away.

Minnesota Public Radio reports that Polk County is handling refuse for five other counties at its Materials Recovery Facility, which recently got an $8 million equipment upgrade to sort and pull cans and plastic containers out of garbage faster.

The county sells the recycled materials and incinerates what’s left. The ash is then used in road construction or dumped in a landfill.

Jon Steiner manages the operation. Steiner says up to 25 percent of material that comes to the facility gets used again or recycled.

Steiner says more recycling will make it easier to manage air pollution from the incinerator.


Information from: Minnesota Public Radio News,

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