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RRR: Douglas County residents react to possible recycling crisis

County officials said the county could be in a crisis after China puts restrictions on acceptable recyclable materials.

Posted: Mar 21, 2018 4:06 PM
Updated: Mar 21, 2018 6:37 PM

DOUGLAS COUNTY, OR. -- Officials in Douglas County said they're dealing with a potential recycling crisis after China recently quit accepting some plastics, paper and other materials.

Officials said China made this decision after receiving recyclables contaminated with food waste, garbage, and other items that aren’t able to be recycled.

(Story Cont. Below)

This won’t affect local bottle drop stations, because they say all of their materials are recycled here in the United States.

But not recycling the items that bottle drops can’t currently take is troubling to residents.

“It is distressing to me, because I know that it shouldn’t be this way. We should be able to recycle everything that we’re using. We’re supposed to be stewards of our world,” said one resident.

Another resident, Pam Freed, said we need to move to more biodegradable materials.

“It’s pretty scary. We need to.. somebody needs to invent something that’s biodegradable that’ll just disappear from the environment and won’t hurt our environment.”

While the first resident said the county should think about working with local companies that recycle to make building materials.

“When they started making the decking out of recycled plastic, they told us that they couldn’t get enough plastic and that they could use any kind of plastic that there was. But, they couldn’t get enough, and ended up moving away to another area, just so they could be in a place that they could get more.”

Douglas County officials say they are working on a solution to this issue.

We will continue to follow this story and give you updates as information becomes available.

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