Well…single stream recycling has arrived for most single family households in Frederick County. If you’ve received one of the new 65 gallon, wheeled, blue totes, you now know single stream collection has arrived for you!
There are still a lot of folks – including my family – that are not included, yet. But if you live in a single family home, and don’t have a tote, please know that this new program will include you before long (some time in the next few months, sooner or later depending on where you live). Multi-family buildings are also in the plan, but that will also be a gradual process.
Three of the most significant aspects of our new single stream recycling program are:
1) Convenience: Single stream recycling makes recycling an item as easy as throwing it away. Everything that can be recycled here can be placed in one large container, which can be easily wheeled to the curb, where it will be collected. It’s as easy as knowing whether to drop an item into one container or the other.
2) More convenience: Many households in the county have not had curbside collection of recyclable items/materials. For us, recycling has meant separating and storing items, and periodically loading up the car and hauling it to one of twelve satellite drop-off centers in the county (for me, that has meant a twelve mile round trip). Without question, wheeling a large tote to the curb is much easier than making those trips.
3) More items and materials will now be accepted: A significant list of items and materials that have not been accepted for recycling previously, at the curb or at the drop-off centers, can now be included. Click here to download a pdf file that lists what can be recycled now (and what can not be).
In many different and substantial ways, recycling is good for the environment. And, without question, it is good for the county’s bottom line. Every ton diverted into this stream will reduce the cost of dealing with our “waste.” Click here to read “Top 10 Reasons to Recycle.”
I’m going to end my comments here, and encourage you to read the two press releases below. If you want or need more information, there are various links, email addresses and phone numbers below.
DEPARTMENT OF SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT
Office of Recycling
9031 Reich’s Ford Road
Frederick, Maryland 21704
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 26, 2009
SINGLE STREAM COLLECTION OFFICIALLY BEGINS
Curbside Recycling Service Now Improved
FREDERICK, MD—The Frederick Board of County Commissioners and the Department Solid Waste Management announce that single stream curbside collection of recyclable materials begins today for residents in existing service areas. To prepare for the new program, the county has been distributing wheeled recycling carts since November. These carts can now be set out for curbside collection.
The single stream program also brings other improvements and changes to residential curbside recycling service. The county’s goal is to make recycling an easier, more efficient process in order to increase recycling rates. More materials will now be accepted and less pre-processing of recyclables is required. Residents will no longer have to sort items, effectively making recycling as easy as throwing something away— but with the benefit conserving resources and our environment.
One of the most noticeable changes affects the recycling collection schedule, which is shifting from weekly to biweekly service. For many residents the day of the week for curbside collection is also changing. The county has been divided into ten new regions, five of which be serviced each week by the county’s contact hauler, Allied Waste services. To provide further information on these changes, a flyer has been mailed to every household with curbside service.
Residents with questions about recycling containers, collection schedules and other issues relevant to their curbside service should contact Allied Waste directly by calling 301-694-6498 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For further information on recycling programs and waste reduction in Frederick County, residents are encouraged to visit www.co.frederick.md.us/recycle.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
January 26, 2009
INFORMATION ON THE NEW SINGLE STREAM
RESIDENTIAL RECYCLING PROGRAM IN FREDERICK COUNTY
FREDERICK, MD – Since November 2008 more than 50,000 County residents have received a new wheeled, lidded container for the collection of recyclable materials. The new carts have generated much interest, a little debate and a great deal of anticipation for when they could actually be set out curbside and used. The Department of Solid Waste Management is pleased to announce that the new single stream curbside collection program officially begins Monday, January 26, 2009. This start date takes effect county-wide, for all single-family homes that have existing recycling service provided by the County.
The single stream program introduces changes and improvements from the previous curbside recycling service. In an effort to communicate these points and address frequently asked questions as well as to provide notice of upcoming developments for the County’s recycling programs, the Office of Recycling has put together this Information Update. In addition to the points discussed here new information is being placed on the Office of Recycling’s website, http://www.co.frederick.md.us/recycling, with more updates to be posted online in the coming weeks.
Who Can Recycle
At this time the improved recycling program is being implemented only in areas of the County that have existing curbside service. However, the Board of County Commissioners have voted to expand curbside recycling service to all single family homes in Frederick County, approximately 17,000 additional residences. The expansion of curbside recycling service to new households will begin in early spring 2009. As these homes are delivered recycling collection containers and program information they will be able to begin participating immediately.
Currently only single family homes are provided with curbside recycling collection. Later in 2009 the Department of Solid Waste Management will be conducting a pilot program to test opportunities for multi-family dwellings such as apartments and condominiums to be provided with recycling collection service.
Single Stream Curbside Service
Single stream recycling means that no sorting of materials is required. Paper, plastics, glass and metal recyclables can all be placed in one container, no matter whether an 18-gallon bin or a larger wheeled cart is used. A complete list of recyclable—and non-recyclable—items is posted on the Office of Recycling’s website, http://www.co.frederick.md.us/recycling.
Excess materials that cannot fit inside the container can be paced next to it in a cardboard box, paper bag or smaller, open-top container. If it can fit inside a collection container, cardboard does not need to be broken down and paper does not have to be bundled and tied.
Carts should be set out curbside no later than 6 am on the day of collection. Carts should be placed with the wheels towards the curb, lid opening towards the street and at least four feet away from possible obstructions such as cars, trees and mailboxes.
Allied Waste Services has been contracted by Frederick County to both perform single stream curbside collection of residential recycling and also to provide customer service for the new program. Questions about collection schedules, recycling containers, service issues and other relevant concerns should be addressed directly to Allied Waste by calling 301-694-6498 or sending email to: email@example.com
Curbside collection has switched from a weekly to an every-other-week schedule. All residents in areas with curbside service have been mailed a new collection schedule, program information and reminder stickers to help ease the transition to the new program.
In the near future residents will be able to go online to the County Office of Recycling’s website to find their recycling collection dates. An interactive feature being created with cooperation from the County GIS and Information Technology Departments will allow residents to enter their street address and be provided with the collection schedule specific to their street. This feature is expected to be online in the next two weeks.
No matter what size or type of container is used, all recycling is now single stream, requiring no more sorting.
Many residents in areas with existing service have ordered a wheeled cart—as a size-exchange, a townhome order, or to make up for an error in the original delivery of carts. These carts are being delivered as inventory and staff schedules allow. Residents on the wait-list are asked to please continue using an 18-gallon bin or other container until their new cart arrives in the next two to six weeks.
Residents who are using a wheeled recycling cart are asked to return the previously-used 18 gallon bins that are the property of Frederick County. During the month of February these bins can be set out curbside—EMPTY—on the scheduled recycling pick-up day and they will be collected for use in other recycling programs.
Residents who have purchased their own 18-gallon bins and/or lids may keep these as they are not County property.
Residents who will use an 18-gallon bin as their ONLY recycling container may continue to place these out at the curb with materials inside and these will not be taken for reuse.
Each of the new wheeled recycling carts has a bar code linking it to a specific street address. If you move to another location in Frederick County, your cart will stay behind at the residence it is linked to and you will use the container bar-coded to correspond to your new address.
The cart’s bar code will be scanned each time your recyclables are collected. This creates a record of when collection has occurred, to assist in the event of service problems. The code is used only to record when any particular cart has participated in curbside collection, but does not record what or how much was in the cart. This process also allows data about regional participation rates for the recycling program to be gathered.
Other Recycling Options
For residents in households or areas where curbside service is not yet provided, the County operates twelve satellite drop-off centers for recyclable materials. These service centers will allow the commingling of all materials except cardboard, which will still need to be separated and flattened. Further information and maps for each drop-off center are found by visiting: http://www.co.frederick.md.us/recycling.