Solutions journalism is news about how communities and organizations are responding to social and environmental problems. This collection contains solutions stories about of the challenges and successes in household recycling. A lack of public education and higher costs in rural areas have caused many recycling programs in the U.S. to struggle. However, some small towns like Swink, CO, have beaten the odds to build successful rural recycling programs. Taiwan and Kamikatsu, Japan have achieved some of the highest rates of recycling in the world through education and enforcement of recycling rules.
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Using recovered items instead of virgin materials, recycling saves energy and reduces waste. Household waste in high-income countries largely consists of paper, plastic, glass, and metal - all materials which are recyclable. Residential recycling programs are usually managed by city governments, and can vary in their efficacy. According to Project Drawdown, some effective initiatives include: "fees for landfill waste, while recycling and composting are free; redeemable deposits paid at purchase (from bottles to electronics); and programs that gather funds from manufacturers to cover recycling costs." Thanks to its capacity to cut emissions, Project Drawdown lists household recycling as a strategy to combat climate change.