SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Since China announced the country would no longer accept recycling from the U.S., bottles, cans, plastic, and paper have become basically worthless.

According to the Boston Globe, Waste Management used to earn as much as $80 per ton for paper it collected, but now the company gets nothing. In fact – now it costs more to recycle glass than it earns.

This means it is just too expensive for most municipalities to offer free recycling. As of right now, most of western Massachusetts doesn’t have to pay but, that could soon change. Springfield produces 7,000 tons of recycling a year.

Right now the city pays nothing to recycle but, because of rising costs, will have to pay $1.2 million a year. This could raise taxes or implement a recycling fee for residents.

Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno told 22News, “I want to make sure I have the most cost-effective, efficient way and also being respectful not only to the environment but, the taxpayers of the city of Springfield.”

Greenfield residents already pay a fee for solid waste. However, on Friday, Mayor Roxann Wedegartner announced those will increase.

On July 1, 2020, the following new fees will apply:

  • Greenfield trash bags and trash stickers: mini bag $1.00, small sticker $1.75, and large sticker $2.50 (increase from $.50, $1.25, and $2.00 respectively)
  • Annual fee for transfer station resident entry sticker: $20 (increase from $5)
  • Transfer station disposal of bagged trash $2.50 (increase from $2)

Latest News:

Find 22News on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram; send your news tips to reportit@wwlp.com.