Legislation to create the Regional Recycling Assessment Task Force was passed by the Suffolk County Legislature on Dec. 17. County Executive Steve Bellone signed the bill. The bill, sponsored by Legislator Kara Hahn, chairwoman of the Legislature’s Environment, Planning and Agriculture Committee, will form the 17-member advisory group comprised of municipal recycling professionals, county agencies and environmental advocates to review existing recycling programs, develop a strategy for increasing the efficiency of recycling across Suffolk, and to develop mechanisms to encourage the streamlining of the local recycling process. Recycling in Suffolk County is currently handled through a patch work of programs administered by local townships.

“Waste management is a global issue that, for far too long, we have viewed through the most local of prisms,” Hahn said via press release. “The challenges confronting recycling programs from town to town are the same as the ones that confront all of us in Suffolk County, across this nation and beyond. It is time for us to consider recyclable solid waste for the large scale issue it is rather than just the curbside nuisance we have long thought it to be.”

The decision to evaluate local recycling efforts is coming during an especially opportune time following the disruption to global recycling programs resulting from China’s 2018 decision to ban the import of most plastics and other materials used by that nation’s recycling processors, according to Hahn’s press release. “The resulting jolt from what was the world’s largest importer of post-consumer plastic waste’s policy change culminated with a number of programs altering, reducing or eliminating recycling earlier this year,” the release states.

To read the full story, visit https://patch.com/new-york/hauppauge/suffolk-county-creates-regional-recycling-assessment-task-force.
Author: Michael DeSantis, Patch
Photo: Shutterstock/Sunny Studio, Patch