Lincoln ban diverts cardboard from landfill, but hikes costs

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LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Lincoln's year-old cardboard ban has led to a drop in the amount sent to the city landfill by 76% but the diversion has also raised city costs.

Donna Garden is assistant director of Lincoln's Transportation and Utilities Department. Garden tells the Lincoln Journal Star that cardboard made up 2.4% of the waste entering the landfill last year, down from 9.4% in 2017.

Lincoln's public recycling sites have seen the amount of cardboard dropped off by residents double since the ban took effect last April. The cost of running those sites has also doubled.

Garden says Lincoln expects to pay about $900,000 a year to Von Busch Refuse to haul away recyclables from the public sites.

Costs are partially offset by revenue from selling the cardboard, but returns have dropped due to changing markets.