2019 Recycling Industry Yearbook

Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Inc. 10 ECONOMIC BENEFITS OF RECYCLING Recycling is a sophisticated, capital-intensive industry that has been creating “green” jobs in the United States for decades. As the first link in the manufacturing supply chain, recycling is integral to the U.S. economy. Independent economic consulting firm John Dunham & Associates conducted an economic impact analysis in 2019 to document the size and scope of the industry and its contributions to the U.S. economy in terms of employment, tax generation, and overall economic benefit. It found that the recycling industry generated $109.78 billion in economic activity in 2018 —that’s 0.54% of the nation’s total economic activity. Recycling processors and brokers directly employ 164,154 people at an average wage of $73,000, including benefits. The industry indirectly supports an additional 367,356 jobs: 159,681 people who supply products and services to the industry and 207,675 others who indirectly benefit from the re-spending of wages by recyclers, brokers, and suppliers. The industry and its employees pay $7.96 billion in federal taxes. Recycling facilities also are significant contributors to the economic health of their state and local governments. They generate about $4.94 billion in state and local tax revenues annually. For the full study, or for information on the recycling industry’s economic impact on a specific state, federal congressional district, state congressional district, or city, visit https://www.isri.org/recycling- commodities/economy. Recycling’s Benefits, Challenges, & Opportunities Economic Impact of U.S. Scrap Recycling Industry, 2019 Direct Jobs 164,154 Supplier Jobs 159,681 Induced Jobs 207,675 Total 531,510 Source: John Dunham & Associates