Jonesborough, Tenn. is approaching the end of its curb-side recycling due to a number of factors, but the main reason seems to be the struggling resell market.

November 7, 2023

1 Min Read
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Jonesborough, Tenn. is approaching the end of its curb-side recycling due to a number of factors, but the main reason seems to be the struggling resell market.

Chuck Best, Jonesborough Mayor, stresses that the resell market has doomed curb-side recycling for the area and that since the COVID-19 pandemic, the resell market just hasn’t been the same.

“The market to sell recyclables has really collapsed,” Vest said. “It’s not a cheap program, and if you can’t resell your recyclables, this is unfortunately the position we find ourselves in.”

Once recycled, materials are usually sold by municipalities to be processed and Tennessee law requires municipalities to make a profit to offer recycling as a service. In 2022, the Town of Jonesborough was able to sell cardboard at $150 a ton, but now the town can only get $25 per ton.

“I’m sure other municipalities the size of Jonesborough [are] going to struggle with that,” Vest said. “Because you either raise your rates a healthy amount or you’ve got to cut their expenses, and we’re choosing to cut their expenses.”

“It’s disappointing for the board to have to do this, but sometimes you have to make these financial decisions, and hopefully in the near future, the market will change, and we can continue curbside again,” Vest said.

According to Vest, two convenience centers will be built in the town for recyclables to be dropped off.

Read the full article here.

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