Recycling Gets Streamlined in Reno

MGN Online
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RENO, NV -- Many Reno residents arrived home Monday night to find a new bin at the end of their driveway. Waste management Monday morning started to roll out single-stream recycling bins, which aim to encourage more people to recycle by making the process easier.

"Carts will be delivering today all the way through January," said Sarah Polito with Waste Management of Nevada.

The new recycle bins are similar to a trash can. They've got wheels and can hold more than the old crates. The only thing that distinguishes them from a trash can is the blue lid on top that shows you exactly what's allowed inside.

"Newspaper, glass, aluminum, tin, steel, and cardboard which is what I am hearing most people are excited about, and then all hard plastics," said Polito.

Before the change, people had to separate items into different crates. It took more effort so only about a third of customers participated.

"We'll be eventually increasing the recycling rate and making it so much easier for our customers to recycle," said Polito.

In a 2008 pilot program, Waste Management found more people recycled, and they recycled more with the single-stream program.

Going green goes beyond just the bins; the new trucks that pick them up operate off natural gas. The trucks take the mixed recyclables to a sorting facility on Greg Street where plastic, glass, metal and paper are separated. The result is pretty much the same, but the single stream is expected to make recycling mainstream.

The new bins are only in Reno. Sparks and Washoe County have not yet voted for the program. Even though you may have already received your bin, the first pickup is not till February.