Jefferson Parish isn't done with recycling yet.
Parish President Mike Yenni announced Thursday that Republic Services will extend the residential recycling program until June 30 at no additional cost to residents.
Republic Services announced on May 8 that they will no longer take household recycling at their facility in Metairie as of May 17.
A spokesperson for Phoenix-based Republic Services said their decision is based on the high contamination rate in household recyclables.
Contamination rate is a measurement of how much non-recyclable material ends up in your recycling bin.
China, the world's largest importer of recyclables, has set a 0.5 percent contamination level requirement for what they’ll accept, while the US average is 30 percent.
“Contamination is a challenge affecting cities large and small across the country. For decades, china was the world’s largest importer of recyclables, but their new environmental policy has set standards that are difficult to meet, and it has upended the global recycling market,” a spokesperson for Republic Services said. “There simply are no longer markets in this region for the excessively contaminated recyclables brought to our facility by the city’s two main haulers, and we have informed them that they may utilize our facility in Baton Rouge should they so choose.”
Orleans and Jefferson Parish officials both assured us they’re exploring all options looking for a solution. There has been no word on if Orleans Parish will get the same extension.
“The current recycling crisis is not just a local issue but a national issue. We are committed to coming up with a permanent recycling solution for Jefferson Parish and are currently exploring all options,” Yenni said. “As we look at waste management as a whole, we have to be better stewards of our planet and be mindful about the waste we are producing. In Jefferson Parish, we want to be part of the solution, not the problem.”