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State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
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news releases

November 14, 2019

Contact: Caryn Shinske (609) 984-1795
Lawrence Hajna (609) 292-2994


(19/P091) TRENTON – As part of America Recycles Day on Friday, Nov. 15, the Department of Environmental Protection is reminding residents across New Jersey that regular recycling will help protect the environment and conserve natural resources.

America Recycles Day, a Keep America Beautiful national initiative focused on promoting and celebrating recycling, gives residents an opportunity to help keep their communities clean and vibrant. More than 2,000 events are planned nationwide for America Recycles Day.

Recycle Day“New Jersey has been a national leader in recycling for more than 30 years because we recognize the positive impacts recycling has on our environment, economy and efforts to protect and conserve natural resources,” said Francis Steitz, Acting Assistant Commissioner for Air Quality, Energy and Sustainability. “We remind the public that recycling keeps communities clean, safeguards public health and improves the overall quality of life. This is one way everyone can make a real difference every day to protect the environment.”

As part of recycling, it is important to keep nonrecyclable items such as plastic bags, propane tanks and used syringes out of curbside and workplace recycling bins. Recyclable items are valuable raw materials used to make new products and should not be mixed with other materials.

In 1987, New Jersey became the first state to make recycling mandatory, adopting the Statewide Mandatory Source Separation and Recycling Act. The law requires recycling in residential, commercial and institutional settings.

New Jersey achieved an overall recycling rate of 61 percent in 2016 – the most recent year for which data is available – and remains a national leader in recycling. The DEP administers several grant and educational programs on behalf of recycling.

Recycle DayRecycling has far-reaching environmental and economic impacts that help reduce the need for new landfills and incinerators. An economic impact study by the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries showed that the nation’s scrap recycling industry is similar in scope to that of the radio and TV broadcasting, building services, and warehousing and storage industries. In addition, a National Recycling Coalition report found that the recycling and reuse industry adds almost $6 billion annually to New Jersey’s economy.

For more information about America Recycles Day, visit  or

To learn more about recycling in New Jersey, visit

For tips on how to reduce waste production, visit

For information on what each of New Jersey’s 21 counties recycles, visit or check with your county’s recycling coordinator at

For more about the DEP’s Division of Air Quality, Energy and Sustainability, visit

Follow the DEP on Twitter @NewJerseyDEP.




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Last Updated: November 14, 2019

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