Ninety-six Percent of Americans Have Access to Community Paper Recycling

Survey by AF&PA shows an increase in access to recycling from 2010.

The American Forest & Paper Association’s (AF&PA) 2014 Community Access Survey shows that overall consumer access to community paper and paperboard recycling in the U.S. reached 96 percent, up from 87 percent in 2010. The survey evaluated 12 separate grades of paper and paperboard, which all showed access increases. Access for 9 of the 12 grades is now at or above 90 percent.

The executive summary of the survey is available at:

“Access to paper recycling in the U.S. continues to increase – which helps to recover valuable resources, extend the useful life of fiber and make new products,” said AF&PA President and CEO Donna Harman. “In addition, we’re pleased to see significant increases in access to recycling for different paper grades.”

The survey results also showed that single-stream recovery has grown in use. Eighty percent of Americans now have access to single-stream collection, a rise from 65 percent in 2010.

Access to curbside and/or drop-off paper and paperboard recycling programs is an important component in reaching the industry’s goal to exceed 70 percent paper recovery by 2020. Consumers’ having broad access to paper recycling demonstrates the success of voluntary recycling infrastructure.

AF&PA’s Community Access 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. It is the latest in a series commissioned by AF&PA and conducted since 1994.

For other information and tips on paper recycling, free classroom resources, statistics, and more, visit

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