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Recyclables Handling and Recovery Facilities

Recyclables handling and recovery facility means a solid waste processing facility, other than collection and transfer vehicles, at which nonputrescible recyclables are separated from the solid waste stream or at which previously separated nonputrescible recyclables are processed.

Recyclable means solid waste that exhibits the potential to be used repeatedly.

Recover means any act or process by which recyclables or reusables are separated from the solid waste stream.

Recycle means to use recyclables in manufacturing a product.

Recyclables Handling and Recovery Facilities in New York State

Recyclables Handling and Recovery Facilities (RHRFs) serve as a processing link for many municipalities and businesses to allow them to get their materials into the recycling system.

If putrescible material or other solid waste is received at the facility, the facility must comply with the Transfer Station requirements of Subpart 360-11. Facilities which separate recyclables from construction and demolition debris are considered construction and demolition debris processing facilities subject to the requirements of Subpart 360-16.

As of November 2013, there are approximately 30 permitted and 266 registered RHRFs in New York State. These facilities can be as large as automated Materials Recovery Facilities that handle more than 100,000 tons per year of recyclables, or they can be very small, such as recyclables drop-off sites for residents in rural communities.

Facilities that may handle recyclables but are not considered RHRFs:

  1. Returnable beverage container redemption operations which are regulated under 6 NYCRR Part 367.
  2. Buy-back centers that purchase source separated, nonputrescible recyclables from the public and accept no other solid waste materials.
  3. Waste tire retreaders and the processing of waste tires for energy recovery on-site, which is regulated under paragraph 360-13.1(d)(1).
  4. Manufacturing facilities which accept a single general type of source separated, nonputrescible recyclable and which produce, through physical or chemical transformation of the material, a marketable product that is then leased, sold, used by a manufacturer or offered for sale or offered for promotional purposes to a consumer as a product and is not disposed of by the manufacturer. Manufacturing facilities which store or process more than one type of recyclable may be exempt if the department has issued an exemption in writing to the owner or operator of the facility. The owner or operator of the facility must submit a written request for an exemption to the department with details of the facility's operations. The department shall determine whether or not the facility is a manufacturing facility which is exempt from solid waste regulation.
  5. An intermediate processor provided all solid waste handled at the facility is sent for recycling or disposed of appropriately. An intermediate processor means any person who receives separated recyclables only from registered recyclables handling and recovery facilities within New York State or facilities otherwise acceptable to the department if located outside of New York State, and then markets same to other intermediate processors, brokers or manufacturers.