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Statewide Recycling Data

For 2018, Pennsylvania recycled over 5.47 million tons of resources. Pennsylvanians recycled materials that cut more than 9.2 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions from the air. This number is also equal to over 2 million in passenger vehicles taken off the road for one year. That same 5.47 million tons can also represent the amount of electricity saved in 1.56 million American homes per year.

In 2017, over 6.36 million tons of recyclable materials were collected and processed in Pennsylvania. This removed an equivalent of more than 9.68 tons of carbon dioxide emissions from the air over 2.09 million passenger vehicles from roads for one year; these same recycled resources are also equal to eliminating the electricity used in over 1.64 million homes or the energy used in more than 1.12 million homes. Pennsylvania’s recycling effort in 2017 showed a loss of 1.48 million tons in 2017 from the prior year. This difference is directly related to a reduction in 2017 reports of 1.61 million tons. These figures are also consistent with the decline North American recycling is experiencing overall.

Summary of Environmental Benefits Analysis Table

Larger version of the Environmental Equivalency Summary table.

NOTE: Equivalents have been re-evaluated to include tonnages from Comingled Materials and therefore are higher than in previous reports.

*Number is high due to unusual increase in amount recycled for Mixed Metals that year.

Total recycling in PA graph

Larger version of the Total Recycling in Pennsylvania graph.