Letter to the Editor: The Los Angeles Times

The Times Editorial Board’s July 5, 2019 editorial “Santa Monica’s recycling center closure is a sign of what’s to come” is alarmist and misleading. 

The recovered paper market rebounded after China’s abrupt import restrictions caused the paper recovery rate to dip in 2017. Fortunately, recovered fiber markets are complex, efficient and extremely resilient. The total U.S. paper recovery for recycling rate reached a record-high 68.1 percent in 2018.

The paper and paper-packaging industry continues to innovate and adapt to market demands. In fact, recovered paper exports from California’s three major ports—Los Angeles, San Francisco and San Diego— increased 2.5 percent (86,000 tons) year-to-date over 2018. 

California should not construct regulatory barriers that will prevent recovered paper markets from adapting to global changes—barriers that will inevitably increase costs for consumers and put our environment at the mercy of another government bureaucracy.

Donna Harman
American Forest & Paper Association
President and CEO