Catawba County News

Catawba County Ranked #1 in State for Recycling

Catawba County Ranked #1 in State for Recycling

Published: January 28, 2021

Catawba County has been ranked number one in recycling statewide by the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality’s Division of Environmental Assistance and Customer Service (DEACS). The rankings were released January 12, 2021, in the division’s newest North Carolina Recycling Program Performance report, which was based on per capita recycling rates for Fiscal Year 2018-19.

DEACS uses public recycling program data to produce per capita recycling rates for counties across North Carolina. The report combines municipal and county recycling efforts and then ranks counties based on program performance. Counties are ranked in two ways: the overall recycling rate and the recycling rate for common household materials.

The recycling rate for common household materials compares the effectiveness of programs recovering cans, bottles, paper, and cardboard. The overall recycling rate includes additional materials such as concrete, shingles and wood wastes, as well as special and hazardous wastes like televisions, used motor oil and used cooking oil.

Catawba County earned the top ranking in both reporting categories with an overall recycling rate measured at 449 pounds per person and a common household materials rate measured at 247 pounds per person. Since 2000, Catawba County has ranked among the top five counties in the state in both categories.

“Catawba County became number one in recycling through the dedicated participation of our residents and local businesses in our public recycling systems,” said Pete Shonka, Catawba County Utilities & Engineering director. “This, along with a continued commitment to innovation and efficiency, has led to the combined successes of our county and municipal recycling programs. As a community, we should all be very proud of this accomplishment.”

To view the full North Carolina County Recycling Program Performance report, visit the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality website at To learn more about recycling and waste reduction programs in Catawba County, visit the Catawba County Utilities & Engineering web page at