‘Green’ can mean money

Published 12:00 am Friday, April 22, 2011

Andalusia Recycling owner Billy Johnson, shown here with a load of copper, said business is great.

For Billy Johnson, the term “going green” has multiple meanings when customers bring aluminum cans and scrap metal to his business Andalusia Recycling.

Recycling means money both in his and his customers’ pockets, as well as protection for the environment.

Because of the economy, Andalusia landfill manager Tom Stephens said he’s seen a 25 percent decline in aluminum and scrap metal collections at the landfill.

Johnson said he’s seen his business triple.

“People are looking for any and all ways they can make money, and selling cans and scraps is one of them,” Johnson said. “The last couple of months have been good. The last two weeks have been great.”

However, Johnson said not all of his customers are looking to make a quick buck.

“I do have some customers who say they do it just because they don’t want to put it in the garbage,” he said. “Some of the people don’t want to be paid for what they drop off. They just don’t want it to go in a landfill somewhere.”

Johnson, who sells his wares to larger markets, said business is “scary good.”

“I bought some new signs about four years ago,” he said. “They’re still sitting inside. I don’t have time to put them up. To tell you the truth, I’m scared at what might happen if I do. I might be overrun.”