U.S. Recovered Paper Consumption 7% higher in 2010

Jan. 27, 2011 - According to the December 2010 Recovered Paper Monthly Report published by the American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA), the U.S. paper industry consumed 31.3 million tons of recovered paper in 2010, a 7% increase over 2009 consumption levels.

Consumption in December was approximately flat when compared to the previous month.

The U.S. exported 1% less recovered paper in November than in October.

Year-to-date exports of recovered paper are down 2% compared to the same months last year.

U.S. Community Paper Recycling Programs Grow
The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) today released results of their 2010 Community Recycling Survey. The study shows that 87 percent of the population has access to curbside and/or drop-off paper and paperboard recycling programs.

“We are encouraged that this rate has held steady through the global recession and population growth that have occurred since the last survey was conducted in 2007,” said AF&PA President and CEO Donna Harman.

Paper recycling access was an important factor in helping the industry exceed its 60 percent recovery goal three years ahead of schedule. In 2009, a record-high 63.4 percent of the paper used in the U.S. was recovered for recycling.

The AF&PA Community Survey is a comprehensive national study that measures and tracks the growth of access to community-level paper and paperboard recycling in the U.S. The 2010 study is the latest in a series of such studies funded by AF&PA and conducted by R. W. Beck since 1994. Data gathered in the survey helps guide AF&PA's work with partner organizations to promote and increase paper recovery.

Key findings from the survey include:

  • 87 percent of the U.S. population (273 million people) have access to curbside and/or drop-off paper recycling programs, including:
    • 63 percent of the U.S. population (193 million people) have access to curbside recycling programs
    • 68 percent of the populations (213 million) have access to drop-off recycling programs
  • Increased access for some grades collected in existing paper/paperboard recycling programs
  • Continued growth in curbside recycling programs employing single-stream collection systems

To learn more about the 2010 AF&PA Community Survey, along with AF&PA recycling programs, resources, and statistics, visit www.paperrecycles.org.