Suburban Cook County encompasses 127 municipalities, as well as unincorporated areas, with a combined population of approximately 2.5 million. Residents, businesses and public facilities in suburban Cook County generate approximately three million tons of waste annually, which is the equivalent of 8200 tons per day or 6.7 pounds per capita per day.
Increasingly, fewer and larger private sector companies are providing waste collection, recycling and disposal services and facilities. The role of county and local governments, in relation to waste management, has shifted from the provision of services and facilities to matters relating to policy formulation, public education and information. Recycling and source reduction programs have been broadly accepted by the public and have significantly reduced the quantity of waste needing disposal. Current recycling rates in suburban Cook County exceed 25%. Improved performance is possible but each additional increment will be more difficult and more costly to achieve.
As more recycling programs come on line and more materials are recovered, additional uses and markets must be secured for products and materials with recyclable content.
For additional information concerning solid waste management:
Administration, Bureau of
69 W. Washington Room 1900