As the economy struggles to recover, many Californians are supplementing their incomes by turning in bottles and cans. Cal Recycle says it paid out 900 million dollars from the Beverage Container Recycling fund to recyclers last year. That means about 82 percent of the bottles and cans sold last year were recycled.
Gary Nootenboom oversees operations at a Sacramento-area recycling center. He says most of the aluminum and plastic goes to Anheuser Busch and 99 percent of the glass goes to a company called Strategic: “Very little of the CRV plastic and aluminum and glass goes to China. A very very big portion of the cardboard and paper products go to China because they have a lot of recycling mills. The biggest recycling mill in the world.”
Cal Recycle says it pays to shop around. Scrap yards typically pay more. And, when recycling plastic, you will usually make a little more if you ask the recycler to pay per piece, instead of by weight.