Recycling business surviving downturn

Recycling business surviving downturn
LEWISTON – Reusing, renewing and recycling. Lewis Clark Recyclers are doing just that. And despite hard economic times, they say their business continues to grow.

"We have heard that there has been some troubles within the industry about moving their volumes. We fortunately have not experienced that except for the short two-week period where we had a lot of the local highways and bi-ways closed due to the weather," said President and CEO of LC Recyclers Mark Armstrong. "So currently and recently, we haven’t had any problems."

Armstrong said more and more people are starting to recycle.

"Anytime we see an upsurge in public awareness, like going green, we see volumes increase, we see more businesses coming online, saying this is something we want to do and so regardless of the economy our business continues to grown in volume," said Armstrong.

Armstrong said, thanks to government regulations that encourage recycling, what you recycle gets used again quickly.

"Office paper typically becomes tissue products, or it maybe used again to make new writing paper," said Armstrong. "Newspaper is used to make newspaper again. ...With a newspaper here, within 90 days it's back on your doorstep."

Plastic bottles become carpet and clothing, cans become fences, auto parts and more. Armstrong said they deal mostly with commercial vendors, recycling that is picked up from Lewiston curbside services and other businesses.

"Volumes come in in large quantity and those are deposited on what we call our tipping floors. We have the north and the south tipping floors and then that material is shorted, gone through by our staff and is baled and then once we have a truck load or a container load quantities we ship those to consumers of an industrial nature, domestic as well as off-shore," said Armstrong.

Armstrong said they keep 11,000 to 14,000 tons of material from going in landfills each year.