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McKean County Recycling Program

Why Recycle?
“So the Earth may be healed”.
With massive energy consumption, depletion of our natural resources, pollution, toxic waste and global warming our earth is ailing.    The average American produces 1,640 lbs. of waste every year. It all has to go somewhere – with fewer than 1,900 landfills (compared to more than 8,000 in 1988) to manage our waste, reducing, recycling, and reusing becomes more important every day.
The shortage of raw materials in the USA has become so critical that the Captains of  the aluminum, steel, paper, plastics, glass  industries, headed by Reynolds Aluminum have convened a consortium - to get the word out to the American public that they need our cans (and paper, glass, plastics etc.) !

Current waste status in McKean County (2000)

40,570 tons of MSW generated (Residual waste from industries, approx. 21,000 additional tons was not included)

 2,966 tons recycled

10,596 POTENTIAL tons of recyclables were land filled (Note: Food waste was not included – food and yard waste accounts for 34% of the waste stream).

Federal/state legislation (Act 101) has set a goal of 35% diversion of wastes from landfills. McKean County’s rate is currently between 4 and 7%.


Reduce, recycle and reuse. McKean County currently has 12 drop-off sites for cardboard, newspapers, mixed paper, plastics, aluminum and bimetal cans. Bradford City recycles cans, cardboard/paper, and glass beverage and food containers.

Although there are organizations in McKean County who currently recycle some of the following recyclables, too few people know about them.  In the year (s) to come we intend to develop a comprehensive “resource” manual as well as to increase pubic education on “how” to properly prepare recyclables for all residents and develop special collections for electronics (computers, cell phones, calculators, microwaves etc.), motor oil, ink jets, Styrofoam, construction demolition, paint, batteries, household hazardous waste (bug killers, solvents, lawn chemicals, oils, disinfectants).