Making Recycling Convenient

Tuesday, October 9th 2007, 8:35 am
By: News On 6

Recycling programs have been underway for years, but Americans still lag behind on recycling efforts. The biggest reason, it is inconvenient. But as News On 6 anchor Jennifer Loren reports, there is a new, simpler way to recycle.

If you recycle, you know the drill, separate, separate, separate.

"In the early years, we've had to separate things fairly significantly," said Steve Snowden.

Now, Steve’s separating days are over. A new program called ‘single stream recycling’ allows you to put all recycle items into one container.

"We like it quite a bit because it is so easy," said Steve Snowden.

Under the new program, the recycling sorting effort is left to someone else.

"We do the separation to mechanically separate the materials here at the recycling facility," said Michael Taylor, an environmental scientist with Waste Management Recycle America.

Fast, rotating devices separate newspaper and cardboard from cans and glass that tumble to another level. Magnets grab metal cans and optical scanners recognize plastic from other items and trigger blasts of air to blow plastic into another bin.

"Highly engineered, highly complex mechanical systems to do the work in a much more efficient, much more cost effective, and much more significantly faster-paced environment," said Michael Taylor.

Environmental scientists have seen an increase in recycling of almost 30% among homeowners who use the system.

"We're much more liable to do something the easier it is to do it," said Steve Snowden.

There are 27 Waste Management Recycle America, single stream recycling facilities in the country. In addition, other recycling organizations use single streaming.

Watch the video: Recycling Without Sorting