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September Economic Snapshot: Measuring Recycling Awareness


recycle blog

Can 311 calls serve as a big data proxy for climate awareness?

If the data is any indication, then it seems like New Yorkers are becoming more aware and concerned about the ecological impact we each have on our environment. In turn, the City has responded with recycling and composting programs such as Composting Days and Recycling Education Centers. So far this year, the Department of Sanitation has collected 579 million pounds of recyclables so far in 2014. 

Just in time for the UN Climate Summit, our September Economic Snapshot examines environmental and recycling awareness in NYC as measured with 311 data.

As seen below, 311 data supplied by NYC Open Data shows a recent increase in recycling related call-ins, with a spike in recent summer months. 

311 calls

More Report Highlights:

  • Staten Island is the borough with the highest Recycling Capture Rate and Recycling Diversion Rate. It is also the borough with the highest number of 311 calls.
  • The citywide average Recycling Capture Rate was 46% in June 2014.
  • Of all residential waste in NYC, about 24% is eligible for curbside recycling and 34% is suitable for composting.
  • 57% of recyclables collected thus far has been paper and cardboard.

composition of residential waste

Read the full industry employment and establishment report for New York City in the September Economic Snapshot. 

For previous Economic Snapshots, visit our economic data archive on the Economic and Research Analysis page.



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