Page 8 - Scene Magazine 45-09 September 2020
P. 8

  B.C. City Scene
BY REBECCA FLEURY Battle Creek City Manager
    contamination – putting non-recyclable materials in the city’s recycling cart – has become a serious issue in Battle Creek curbside recycling.
on track.
I want you to
The recycling challenge has increased in recent years as China – a major importer of recyclable materials – has become more strict with which materials they accept, and the level of contamination allowed.
recycling right
in Battle Creek, but we need help from our neighbors.
• DO NOT recycle curbside: plastic bags of any kind – even if it has a recycling number; food and liquids (keep the lid closed so rain doesn’t contaminate your cart); paper plates, napkins, and paper towels; Styrofoam; pizza boxes; dispos- able coffee and drink cups; shredded paper; clothes.
Right now, China will accept loads of materials with a maximum 0.5 percent contamination. Contamination is, for ex- ample, recyclable items packed in plastic bags (plastic bags are NOT recyclable curbside), or wet items that have dampened and rotted cardboard in the same load.
• There is currently no sorting of the curbside recycling carts. What you
put in your cart goes all the way to the recycling collection facility in Holland, Michigan, affecting the entire truckload.
• When in doubt, throw it out!
By comparison, the City of Battle Creek currently faces a 30 percent contamination rate in some neighborhoods.
This level of contamination has resulted in temporarily rerouting some of the City’s recycling collection days to the landfill rather than to the recycling facil- ity. As I write this, we are working with
• When the recycling facility rejects a truckload of the City’s recycling for too much contamination, it results in ad- ditional fees of $1,650 per truck to the program and the entire load of materials going to the landfill.
The City of Battle Creek is commit- ted to recycling, but we need everyone’s help to make it work. If you need more information, or have questions, please visit our website, recycling. For additional, county-wide recycling information, visit calhoun-
I know
that recycling
is not always
easy – Can I recycle a pizza box? (No.) Can I leave the tops on my plastic water bottles? (Yes.) But
Waste Manage- ment to narrow
• Recycling carts placed at the curbside may be checked for contamination. Contaminated carts would be tagged and left at the curbside with educa- tional materials on what we accept in the recycling cart. Carts tagged for contamination multiple times may be removed and curbside recycling for that residence could be discontinued.
You can also contact our Environmen- tal Services team at (269) 966-3355 ext. 1878 or
down more specific areas
• Please continue recycling on your scheduled collection day.
where contamina- tion is the highest, so we can get back
• Learn what the city’s curbside program accepts: plastics #1-#7 that have a recycling number on the bottom (leave caps on); glass (remove lids – and recycle those, too); flattened cardboard and paperboard (cereal boxes); office paper, junk mail, magazines; metal food cans.
know that we are committed to
• Clean and dry all materials, and keep materials loose in the cart.
Thank you for helping us recycling right!

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