Sunday, May 8, 2011

Residents clued in to recycling - Schenectady undertakes a campaign to change the way it handles trash disposal - Times Union
... Anthony Verrigni, ... of the city's waste collection team, walked door-to-door in the Bellevue neighborhood....

He and other workers were delivering informational booklets that officials hope will convince residents to raise the city's abysmal recycling rate, which stands at only 8 percent of the total annual trash haul.
Verrigni will have to come up with something original to serenade the city's new educational program, which hopes to elevate recycling rates above 20 percent to save taxpayers up to $400,000 on waste hauling costs.

The city originally considered going to a single-stream system, whereby Schenectady would provide large cans to each household that would require no sorting. But at a cost of $1.5 million just to buy the cans, and little room on some narrow streets to hold them, re-educating the population about recycling is currently the only option, said Commissioner of General Services Carl Olsen. When Schenectady started picking up recycling in 1992, trash waste was reduced by 25 percent. Olsen blames the city for stopping educational efforts, which are essential when dealing with an urban transient population. 'If people have the information, most people will comply,' he said.

This week, waste collection workers are hand-delivering recycling booklets to about 2,000 households in the Bellevue and Mont Pleasant neighborhoods. The city will determine if recycling increases in those areas and adjust the educational program as it moves to other areas. The materials will be given to kids at bus stops to take home to their parents. A waste department Twitter account has even been created to keep residents abreast of the campaign.
Read the city of Schenectady's new recycling booklet at Follow the recycling educational program on Twitter at schenectadywastedept.

The Albany Times Union
April 20, 2011

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