a decline of 1 million tons less garbage than normal

dual light

Senior Member
KOREAN
Hello,
The following is regarding a recycling program known as the Green Dot system which Germany has developed.

"The fees charged for green dots increase with the amount of packaging, and monies from this program are used to help recycle the packaging. Consumers are encouraged to buy products that have the green dots. According to most reports, this system has led to a dramatic decrease in the amount of packaging used, thus creating less garbage that needs recycling. Germany claims the result has been a decline of about 1 million tons less garbage than normal every year."

I think the intended meaning of the last sentence is that the amount of garbage has reduced by about 1 million tons in comparison with normal years. But I am wondering whether "a decline of about 1 million tons less garbage than normal every year" can mean such meaning. Could I have your kind comment on this?
 
  • gramman

    Senior Member
    I think you've got the meaning right, but I'd say this is poorly worded. For one thing, it could mean that the level is being reduced by a further one million tons every year. More to the point, it would read better if it said something like:

    Germany claims the result has been a reduction of about one million tons compared to previous years.
     

    Egmont

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    I also find the wording confusing. Does it mean a one-time drop of one [single digits are usually spelled out in English, not written with digits] million tons in one year, or a drop of one million tons every year - so that after three years, garbage was down three million tons from its previous average level?

    Your guess as to the meaning is as good as anyone's.
     
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