Thursday, August 18, 2022

All Alone in a World of Trash

By on March 4, 2022

Gov’t Plans to Start Closing Landfills that Violate EPA Regulations

Most recyclable materials have to be exported outside the island to be recycled due to lack of local technology

The issue of solid waste disposal and the lack of infrastructure for the development of a recycling industry in Puerto Rico that can offset the overload of its
landfills can be summed up as a matter of a lack of interest of the sectors involved, which do not consider it a cost-effective industry. Both the government
and private companies seem to have chosen to consider the problem of garbage on the island as one of profitability and earnings instead of one of health and environmental protection in times of climate crisis.

On the one hand, in the absence of active government involvement for potential investors to develop a recycling industry in Puerto Rico, the alternative
of diverting waste to landfills through recycling is considerably reduced. External factors such as crude oil prices and events such as the COVID-19 pandemic
exacerbate the recycling problem on the island, further diminishing the possibility of developing a local market for recycled materials.

On the other hand, the lack of government monitoring has led to numerous municipal landfills that do not meet the environmental requirements established by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and must be closed in the coming years.

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