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A Word About Recycling with Ollie Maier

Hope you don’t mind, but even though I thought I had covered the changes we might expect with the new restrictions China has for accepting imported recycled materials, an article in the latest Recycling Today newsletter forces me to write even more on it.

The article was titled, “China’s government eyes complete scrap import ban.” Although such a ban may not occur until 2021, it still caught my attention and you can see why I felt I must address it.

The article mentioned, “Scrap recyclers around the world are scrambling to figure out what China’s State Council means when it says it seeks to ‘ban importing solid waste’ permanently by the end of 2020.”

While it appears this directive is designed to hold local and provincial governments accountable to Beijing in their efforts to improve the overall environmental quality and ensure a significant decrease in pollutant emissions by 2020 – mainly aimed at improving air and water quality.

As mentioned earlier, China has led the world with its import of scrap materials. For example, in 2016 by importing some 28.5 million metric tons of scrap paper and more than 3.3 million metric tons of copper-bearing scrap, China imported some 775,000 metric tons of plastic scrap from the U.S. alone.

It will be interesting to see what happens in 2021 if this is the case, I hope I am still able to continue these columns then to report on it.

Closer to home, another article mentioned a new scrap facility is being opened just a little way north on I-35.

With info taken from the local Community Impact website. The article about the company Wilco Iron & Metal Recycling said it started purchasing scrap metal in Jarrell, Texas in June.

The company will be buying things like loose tin and steel, white goods, car bodies, electric motors, aluminum, brass, copper and stainless steel scrap. Sounds a lot like what our local Green Guy Recycling Services takes.

Speaking of Green Guy Recycling Service, here is what local citizens recycled at the drop-off site this past May:

  • Metals: 2,343,657 lbs
  • Cardboard: 495,080 lbs
  • Paper: 89,380 lbs
  • Glass: 38,502 lbs
  • Plastic: 15,655 lbs
  • Monitors: 3,199 lbs
  • Electronics: 2,416 lbs
  • Used Oil: 1,200 Gallons
  • Used oil filters: 200 Units
  • Used Tires: 1,052

Also a number of other things were recycled there such as printer cartridges, rechargeable batteries, Styrofoam peanuts, etc., plus some recycled items sold to citizens at a greatly reduced price. Again, we should all be very proud of these amounts. We also appreciate everything recycled at other drop-off sites and curbside. A big thank you to all of you who recycle and are good stewards of all the blessings we have been given. Keep up the wonderful work.

Till next week, do have a great one...

--Ollie is a local citizen concerned with the environment and helping others. A retired Air Force fighter and instructor pilot, he is a graduate of Leadership San Marcos and received his degrees at Texas State University where he worked on staff before totally retiring. For questions or comments, he invites you to call him at 512-353-7432 or e-mail

San Marcos Record

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