Recycling volume is ‘picking up’ in city

The list of items that can be recycled in the City of Warren has grown and indications are residents are taking full advantage of it.

This year, Advanced Disposal Services, which handles recycling collection in the city, began accepting new types of plastics and cardboard from residents and its making a difference.

“There’s definitely been an increase in volume,” Advanced Disposal’s Dan Ristau said. “It seem to be going well. We even went as far as going single stream with it.”

What “single stream” means is different types of recyclables can be collected at once, in the same container, as they are hauled in the same truck.

“They don’t even have to sort it,” Ristau said.

Water soluble materials; such as newspapers, magazines and catalogs and cardboard; may be placed together but must still be recycled separately from other materials and put out for collection in lidded recycling containers.

While Ristau didn’t have hard numbers available, he said the company does monitor collection tonnage and the totals show residents are recycling the expanded items.

“There’s been quite an increase,” he said. “We monitor on a monthly basis. We’ve seen a definite increase in tonnage.”

Ristau noted an increase in recycling tonnage typically indicates a decrease in other waste tonnage.

“If they’re recycling it, it’s not going in the trash,” Ristau said.

This year saw another change in the city recycling program; an increase in cost.

This year’s charge for recycling services to the city included an increase of $12,000, but, according to Ristau, that shouldn’t mark the start of a trend.

“If the market holds steady,” he said. “It should probably level off.”

Ristau noted he views the relationship with the city positively, and expects it will lead to even greater utilization of recycling opportunities.

“The city and everybody have worked really well with us,” Ristau said. “I feel, is they continue the direction they’re going, we’ll continue to see the tonnages go up.”

Items acceptable for recycling according to publicly available city recycling program materials include:

Plastics – PET, PETE, HDPE, PVC, LDPE, PP, PS (#1 through #7). Plastic containers such as cooking oil bottles, disposable cups, butter tubs, mouthwash bottles, medicine and syrup bottles, and other household plastic. Plastic bottles with a neck, both clear and colored, including water bottles, detergent bottles and milk jugs. Plastics #3 through #7 are newly permissable this year.

Glass – Clear, green and brown. Food and beverage containers. Do not include lids or caps, window glass, drinking glasses, light bulbs, mirrors, dishes, or ceramics. For safety reasons, do not break glass.

Aluminum cans – Soda and beer cans. Do not include aluminum foil or food trays

Tin – Steel and Tin cans such as fruit, vegetable or fruit cans. Do not include other metal items such as scrap metal, toasters, pots and coat hangers.

Paper – Newspapers and inserts, glossy magazines, catalogs, double-walled cardboard, shipping boxes and pizza boxes. Paper items must be dry. Cardboard is newly permissable this year.

City residents are mandated by ordinance to separate recyclable materials from other solid waste.