Trash Counterproductive Waste Disposal Policies

Trash Counterproductive Waste Disposal Policies

January 23, 2009

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Solid waste. Much of the nation’s current solid waste policies follow an outdated, politicized, and government-centered model. State and local regulators focus on deciding how much waste should be recycled, placed in landfills, or burned in incinerators. This approach fails to discover the most environmentally and economically sound mix of options. Policy makers lack the necessary information and therefore focus on misplaced perceptions about the various disposal options. As a result, they produce recycling programs that cost more than they save and use more resources than they save. In contrast, private sector competition between recycling, landfilling, and incineration produces a market that reduces costs and saves resources.