Which of the following is correct?

  1. "A lot of paper and cardboard is recycled"
  2. "A lot of paper and cardboard are recycled"?

It feels like the 1st sentence is correct, because we see the two materials as a whole, but I' m not sure.

  • I agree: the first sentence is the one I would prefer. However, "A lot of paper and a lot of cardboard are recycled" would also be acceptable. – tautophile May 14 '18 at 16:55
  • 1
    Replace lot with box and the reason will be more obvious. – Barmar May 14 '18 at 21:39

The first sentence is correct: "lot" is the subject of the sentence and is singular. "Is" agrees with it. "Paper and cardboard" are objects of the preposition "of" and modify the subject "lot."

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