Mouth That Roars

Bill Liblick has made a name for himself of National TV Talk Shows where he spouted his outspoken views from the front row. Now he offers you his opinion every week in the "MOUTH THAT ROARS" Column in the Sullivan County Post.

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September 9th, 2011

Get Ready For A New Kind Of Recycling System

To some recycling is a hassle due to the fact that recyclables need to be separated. Those people will be glad to learn that Sullivan County will soon be converting over from a dual stream recycling system that used to require separation of recyclables at the source, to the single stream system beginning this month.

The new system is expected to benefit Sullivan County’s economy by increasing revenues from recycling participation, and improve the environment by avoiding land filling items that should be recycled.

Recycling Coordinator, Bill Cutler, will rollout a comprehensive educational program on single stream recycling throughout the County’s schools that will coincide with the start of the program and the start of the school calendar.

Although there will be educational programs and information sent through schools and community groups, it is something all Sullivan County residents must become aware of quickly.

Single stream recycling is a system in which convenience recyclables such as glass bottles, metal cans, plastic containers and paper fiber such as newsprint, mixed paper and cardboard, are all placed together in one recycling container to be sorted by state-of-the-art processing equipment at a regional recycling center.

Sullivan County residents, businesses and waste haulers will no longer have to separate their paper and containers, making curbside and drop off station recycling collection much more convenient.

The convenience of single stream recycling will mean all paper, glass bottles and plastic containers, steel and aluminum cans can be collected, stored, transported and ultimately recycled in one convenient sort. Multiple-category recycling bins for specific items will become a thing of the past.

One easy, commingled convenience recycling category reduces the number of container types and collection runs needed to accept materials, vastly streamlining the recycling process.

Over time, recycling rates go up in communities that shift to single stream recycling. Old-style multi-sort recycling programs are less convenient than all-in-one commingled systems like Single Stream, so more people than ever will be inclined to recycle.

Obviously, more recycling will mean less waste will be delivered to distant landfills. This will save money, natural resources, and energy consumption and reduced truck emissions over time.

County manager David Fanslau told me the benefits of converting to a single stream recycling system will not only increase the participation and compliance with recycling laws, but the conversion has already cost-avoided nearly $1.8 million in capital cost for the property taxpayers of Sullivan County.

“The County was in a position to avoid procuring new dual separation equipment for the Materials recovery Facility (MRF), by converting to a single stream recycling model,” Fanslau noted.

“The County has grossed about $500,000 annually in recycling revenues that had to be netted against expense of operating the dual stream program. The County anticipates grossing as much, and likely more revenues from a higher participation in the single stream program, that will be netted against expenses of the program. The County will realize a revenue stream from recycling through an agreement with the single stream recycling program plant that will process the materials,” Fanslau added.

Hopefully this new program will lead more people to recycle.

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