TRENTON, NJ - State Sen.Kip Bateman’s legislation to establish a council to make recommendations for the future of recycling in the state passed the Senate.

“There have been significant changes in the global recycling market, and the impact is being felt throughout our counties and towns,” said Bateman (R-16). “Local governments are struggling to maintain recycling without the outside revenue. The public has embraced recycling so effectively that supply now exceeds demand. The imbalance results in warehouses overflowing with paper, cans, bottles and plastic, and the excess ends up going to the landfill.”

The bill establishes a Recycling Market Development Council to analyze the market for recycling and consider strategies to increase the use of collected recyclables in the manufacture of new products.

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“Recycling can only be sustainable when there is a market for material and it can generate enough money to cover the costs of collection and processing,” Bateman added. “We need to take a close look at recycling streams and consider options to resuscitate this crucial environmental program. This council may be our best chance to find a solution.”

For years, China was the world’s largest market for recycling and the recipient of much of the salvaged material from New Jersey. However, as the demand has waned the Chinese have dramatically limited the amount of foreign recyclables they will accept.

The Recycling Market Development Council established by Bateman’s bill would operate within the State Department of Environmental Protection.