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Landfill taking in electronics this weekend

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The weather is finally warm and nearly dry enough for the annual rite of spring cleaning. While the Kenai Peninsula Borough solid waste department usually receives all manner of used goods, this weekend, it will specifically be taking in electronics.

Everything from keyboards to cell phones to vacuums is welcome. There is no cost, though a $15 donation is suggested for some items, like old tube TVs. Borough solid waste manager Jack Maryott says the economics of recycling a variety of materials is changing as global markets change, like in China, where fewer materials are being accepted from the U.S.

“That is having a significant impact right now on the markets that we deal in and even nationwide. For instance, mixed paper, which is a very loose grade of paper...we used to get $10 or $15 a ton in revenue and then it went to zero, then it was $20 a ton we’re paying to recycle it. Then the next month it went to $40 and that’s where we’re at right now.”

Maryott says those recyclables really do get shipped off for further processing, counter to longstanding whispers that the borough doesn’t recycle what it says it does.

“That myth has been going on as long as I’ve been in solid waste.  And I don’t know that it’s ever going to go away, but it is a total myth. There are some miscommunications sometimes that that happens, but I can guarantee you that the Kenai Peninsula Borough has, and will continue to ship this material outside. When we consolidate it and pay for it, it definitely is shipped out.

He says if you can’t get materials to the Central Peninsula Landfill this Saturday between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., there are other, daily options with the company the borough partners with in Anchorage.

“This year it is Central Environmental Services. Or a company called Total Reclaim. They accept on a daily basis in the Huffman Business Park, so there are recycle opportunities up there.”

Maryott made his comments during our two-day long block of all local programming for our spring membership drive last week.

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