Lexington Suspends Paper Recycling, Many Central Kentucky Cities Impacted

May 14, 2019

Changes in the global marketplace for recycled materials are forcing the Lexington Recycle Center to temporarily suspend recycling of paper.

The change will go into effect immediately.

Lexington’s Commissioner of Environmental Quality and Public Works Nancy Albright said the demand for paper has diminished and the recycling center doesn’t have space to store large quantities of paper.

The city is actively seeking new recycling outlets for paper,  but she says it’s unclear when paper recycling might resume.

Residents are encouraged to throw office paper, newspaper, magazines, cereal boxes, paper towel rolls and similar products in their trashcans until further notice.

The paper will now go directly to a landfill in Scott County.  

Dry corrugated cardboard, like moving and shipping boxes can still be recycled. 

Recycling markets across the country are under strain due to increased standards in China. Over the past several months, the city has often given mixed paper and paperboard away to avoid sending it to the landfill.

The change affects the materials Lexington Recycle Center (or Lexington Materials Recovery Facility) receives from public and private waste haulers in Lexington and many other Central Kentucky communities, including, Berea, Frankfort, Franklin County, Georgetown, Harrison County, Jessamine County, Madison County, Nicholasville, Paris, Versailles, Winchester and Woodford County.

Residents in all of these communities are encouraged to temporarily refrain from putting paper products in their recycling containers.

Visit Lexington's website  for more information.