City: Ann Arbor recycling rates increased 24 percent in first year of single-stream recycling
In July 2010, the City of Ann Arbor’s recycling system underwent a transformation to a single-stream operation. Now, the city is reflecting on its progress since the program started.
Since the city’s switch to single-stream recycling, Ann Arbor’s recycling rates have increased by 24 percent and trash tonnages have been reduced by 10 percent. The use of recycling carts allowed the city and its contracted recycling collector Recycle Ann Arbor to reduce truck routes and save operating costs, according to a news release.
The Ann Arbor City Council in August voted to boost payments to nonprofit Recycle Ann Arbor by about $107,000 annually — partly making up for the fact that projections for single-stream recycling have proven overly optimistic.
The upgrades to the city-owned Materials Recovery Facility increased recycling throughput to process up to 20 tons of recyclables an hour — for two shifts/day — averaging more than 4,000 tons per month, the release said.
Ann Arbor officials in October asked residents to take a quick online survey to help provide feedback about the city's recycling program. The survey asks residents how their recycling behavior has changed since the introduction of singe-stream recycling in July 2010.
Prior to July 2010, Ann Arbor residents were required to separate papers and containers into two different curbside recycling bins. With the single-stream recycling system, residents and businesses were able to recycle all their recyclables in one new large cart, according to the release.
For more information, visit www.a2gov.org/recycle.