THE RECYLING MYTH

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FYI: Continuing his campaign to restart curbside recycling, City Comptroller William Thompson Jr. released yesterday the most comprehensive of a series of his analyses of recycling costs, concluding that the city could save $16 million in fiscal year 2004 if it went back to full-scale recycling. In fact, Thompson’s report concludes, the most expensive option is to continue recycling only paper and metal. Based on the volume recycled in 2002, when the city cut the program back, recycling in 2004 would cost an average $126 per ton, Thompson says, while refuse removal would cost $174 per ton. He explains that savings from the program’s suspension never materialized because the city was unable to cut the number of truck shifts and because the costs of transporting and disposing refuse continue to climb. [5/20/03]