But just how much cardboard does the average person have to cough up at the recycling center to see a substantial profit?
This question was posed to us at the Reference Desk last week by one of our patrons, and we were able to find an answer in a November 2008 article from the Akron-Beacon Journal. According to Bob Downing's "Price of Recyclables is Down in Dumps: Cardboard, Metals Only Haul in a Fraction of What They Did in August; Disposal Rates Might Increase":
Sadly, it seems as though even recycling centers are feeling the force of the economy's hard blows, at least for the time being. But if you have a few tons (!) of newspaper or tin on hand and would like to make it a profit on them, feel free to call your local Waste Management District at (330) 874-2258 or visit the Stark-Tuscarawas-Wayne Joint Solid Waste Management District website.
"Recycled newspaper has plummeted from $175 a ton to about $60 a ton. A hard mix of cardboard from cereal-box paper has dropped from $80 a ton to nothing. Tin has gone from $510 a ton to $50 a ton, copper from $3.50 a pound to $1.25 a pound and aluminum from $1.03 a pound to 40 cents a pound. Platinum, which is found in vehicle catalytic converters, has shrunk from $2,000 per ounce to $826 per ounce. Stainless steel has dropped from $1.70 a pound to 20 cents a pound, if it's delivered to Pittsburgh."