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Florida Recycling
Resource Recovery

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Florida Recycling: 75% by 2020

 by Bob Huffer,

Notably similar to the goals of California, Florida is also striving to reach a 75% recycling rate by the year 2020. As both states are known for their beautiful weather and dedication to the environment, it is only fitting that Florida is also trying to do all they can to protect it. Though they both have similar track records when it comes to a comparison with the rest of the United States, the sunshine state seems to be keeping up slightly better than California. Not completely on track to reach their goal (40% by 2012, 50% by 2014, 60% by 2016, 70% by 2018, and 75% by 2020), Florida reached a recycling rate of 56% in 2016. Over 10% closer to their goal in 2016 than California, Florida has explored a few avenues that may lead to their success.


Turning their attention toward C&D recycling, Florida guided counties to develop programs for recycling C&D (Construction and Demolition) materials. Now all C&D materials must be processed prior to disposal. Their efforts to reclaim more C&D materials are reflected in a 20% increase in C&D recycling. Another area given special attention is the commercial sector. Responsible for creating 68% of the Municipal Solid Waste in Florida, this segment is seen as essential to reaching the 75% goal for recycling overall. In an overview prepared by the DEP (Department of Environmental Protection), it is established that even if residential recycling rates reached 100%, the state’s goal would not be met without buy-in from the commercial district.


Examining the well-thought-out plans of the DEP and improvements that have already been made to reach their goal recycling rate, it is becoming more evident that the effort now lies on the shoulders of the public and recyclers. The 19% left to improve seems like an impossible effort to many, however, the goal is possible. General Kinematics has, in fact, seen many customers reach this goal first hand. Working with some of the larger recycling organizations in the area, GK has collaborated on proven solutions across the state. One of the most effective ways to improve individual recycling rates starts with the screening process.

Effectively separating and distributing the stream to the subsequent equipment drastically improves the end product, allowing the material purity to increase as it travels through the system. GK has designed the FINGER-SCREEN™ 2.0 to sort and evenly distribute materials for the downstream process. The new screen has been proven to increase fine recovery for C&D recyclers and is flexible enough to switch between processing C&D and Class III materials.


Improving purity rates could also be a game changer for Florida recyclers. Reopening the doors to China for US materials can improve return and make efforts more economically feasible. To learn more about what you can do to improve the recycling rate at your facility contact me!

Bob Huffer

Eastern Regional Manager

Bob Huffer is General Kinematics’ Eastern Regional Manager. With over 25 years of experience at GK, Bob has extensive knowledge of the challenges Recyclers face today. In his previous roles in Design Engineering and Field Service Manager, Bob gained a wide range of technical knowledge in many different processes and developed a keen eye for GK Vibratory Technology Solutions. Currently located in Florida, Bob works with many recycling facilities throughout the Southeastern US. He has a BS in Engineering from Illinois State University.