The borough of Palmerton has been awarded $8,160 from the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) under the Recycling Performance Grant Program, Rep. Doyle Heffley (R-Carbon) announced.

"This grant program supplies needed state funding to ensure that communities in Carbon County continue to expand recycling in our area," said Heffley. "The more we recycle, the less waste that gets dumped in landfills, and the more energy we save."

The Recycling Performance Grant Program reimburses municipal authorities and other entities for half the salary of the recycling coordinator.

The program was established in 1988 with the passage of the Municipal Waste Planning, Recycling and Waste Reduction Act. The grant received by Palmerton is based on the 490 tons of waste the borough recycled during the 2009 calendar year.

The DEP recycling program promotes economic growth and provides municipalities and counties with incentives to increase the amount of materials recovered from the waste stream. This grant is in addition to the funds DEP allocates to municipalities to establish and maintain recycling programs.

According to the most recent statistics available through DEP, Carbon County recycled 5,775 tons of recyclable materials: plastics, paper and cardboard, aluminum and other metals and yard waste combined. Pennsylvania recycled nearly 5.5 million tons of post-consumer waste in 2008.

According to DEP, in 2005, recycling in Pennsylvania saved more than 98 trillion BTUs of energy, enough to power 941,000 houses. By recycling more than 1.2 million tons of steel in 2005, Pennsylvanians saved 1.4 million tons of iron ore, 829,786 tons of coal, and 71,124 tons of limestone.

For additional information on recycling, municipal waste planning and waste reduction, visit the DEP website at www.dep.state. pa.us.