Audit: Recycling is costing the city (a lot) - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Audit: Recycling is costing the city (a lot)

(Image: Department of Environmental Services/YouTube) (Image: Department of Environmental Services/YouTube)
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

The city's recycling program is wasting millions of dollars annually.

That's the conclusion of a new city audit, which says the city could have cut about $7 million in costs if it had diverted recycled materials (including green waste) to the H-Power facility.

At the same time, diverting recyclable waste to the facility could have generate about $30 million in revenues.

The H-Power facility converts solid waste into electricity, which is then sold to Hawaiian Electric. 

And under an agreement, the city guarantees a certain amount of waste gets to the facility each year -- or pays the contractor if the waste tonnage falls short.

For the last several years, the audit, the city paid the facility's contractor for not sending enough trash to the facility.

At the same time, the audit also showed a decline in the market for selling and buying recycled waste and says the revenue is not enough to offset the costs of processing the collecting recycled waste. 

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