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Recycle It! program sparks increase in recyclables collected
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Contact: Charita Curtis, 704-432-3538 or 704-363-5104
ccurtis@charlottenc.gov

The set-out rate for the City's recycling program has grown by 25 percent.

In July, Charlotte residents began using Charlotte’s improved residential single-stream recycling program, Recycle It! Solid Waste Services made several improvements to the program, including a 96-gallon, wheeled cart and the addition of several materials to the approved list of items accepted in the program.
Solid Waste Services staff has analyzed the latest 60-day single-family tonnage and set-out rates and noted the following:
  • There was a 22% increase in the collected tonnage in July 2010 from July 2009 (3,177 and 2,599 respectively); however, there was a 37% increase in tonnage collected in August 2010 when compared to August 2009 (3,338 and 2,426 respectively).
  • Overall set-out rates in the program are 53%, meaning approximately 53% of all households are setting recyclables out for collection on any given day. A set-out rate study completed for Mecklenburg County by Clark and Chase in October of 2009 noted the City of Charlotte set-out rate to be 42%. Since the study was completed and single-stream recycling implemented, set-out rates have increased by 25 percent.
"We are excited to see a modest increase in tonnage collected and in the number of homes that are setting their recycling cart at the curb," said Victoria O. Garland, Solid Waste Services key business executive. "While we can’t fully attribute the increase in set-out rate to the transition to single-stream recycling, we do believe it was a strong factor in the increase."

Garland says there is still opportunity for improvement and asks residents to
  • Put their recyclables out on the correct day and week. "It’s important that residents know their collection day and week. They can go online to http://recycleit.charlottenc.gov or call 311 (704.336.7600) to find this information."
  • Remember recycling collection is every other week. "Residents are reminded that recyclables are collected on the same day as garbage and yard waste; however recyclables are collected every-other-week (garbage and yard waste continue to be collected weekly)."
  • Don’t bag recyclables. Recyclables should be placed in the green cart un-bagged. Bagging recyclables slows down sorting the recyclables at the material processing facility.
  • Know what can be recycled. "The expanded program allows residents to recycle much more, including wax-coated milk and orange juice cartons, juice boxes, aerosol cans and plastics 1-5 & 7." A full list of what can be recycled can be found at http://recycleit.charlottenc.gov.