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Friday, July 15, 2011

Ward 5 Single Stream Recycling Pilot Program Renamed and Going City Wide!

Full program should launch this fall, after public outreach effort and Aldermanic approval of a new recycling removal contract.

After nine months of testing an extremely popular zero-sort recycling pilot program in Ward 5, the City of Somerville has reached an agreement in principle with Casella Recycling LLC to take the program citywide this fall.

Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone will submit a 10-year recycling removal contract with Casella to the Board of Aldermen. Pending approval of the contract, Casella will purchase 64-gallon, wheeled recycling bins for all residences by the City recycling program, and distribute them this fall in advance of the official switchover to the zero-sort program.

Previously the program had been called “single-stream recycling,” but the name change zero-sort reflects that, literally, no sorting of recyclables is required of residents. All of their recyclables can be thrown into the same bin and then wheeled out to the curb for collection.

“The question I have been asked most over the past year has been ‘When is zero-sort recycling going to branch out to other neighborhoods?’” Mayor Curtatone said. “People have been clamoring for it, which is no surprise because it really does simplify recycling. All your paper, plastics and glass go into the same bin. The pilot was immensely popular and we made it a priority to expand to the rest of the city this year.”

In fact the recent resident survey conducted by the City revealed that Ward 5 reported the highest level of satisfaction with the recycling program, scoring more than 10% higher than the average response from the other six wards in Somerville. Recycling inside the pilot area also increased 60%.

“People love it and our recycling numbers shot up dramatically,” Curtatone said. “The pilot was a wild success.”

The rollout plan for citywide zero-sort launch will be similar to the one used in the pilot program. Residents will receive their bins curbside one week before the program begins and can start using them immediately.

“The whole program is predicated around it being easy to use,” said David Lutes, director of the City’s Office of Sustainability and the Environment. “It will take some education on the City’s part to let people know what they can recycle and how the program works, but for the residents it’s as easy as tossing all their recyclables in one bin and wheeling it out to the curb on collection day. It’s fast. It’s clean. It’s simple.”

Ward 5 Recycling Chart:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The city will now be littered with massive containers that need to stay outside. Ugly. Can we opt out, and stick with the older containers?