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Post Gazette of Boston, Massachusetts

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This week, Boston residents riding on a MBTA bus, taking the T, or just walking down Main Street will notice a new promotional campaign launched by the City of Boston reminding everyone how easy and important it is to recycle in Boston. The ads, featuring Boston residents at home with a variety of everyday recyclable items, will run for eight weeks this fall and again in the spring. Recycling in Boston is now easier than ever with the City's new recycling carts and I hope these ads will help encourage our residents to take advantage of this opportunity to start recycling. I know that Boston residents care about the environment, particularly their own environment, and recycling is an important way to take care of our City and keep our neighborhoods clean and vibrant. Last summer, we switched from "dual-stream" recycling, which required separating bottles, cans and plastic from paper, to the Recycle More! "single-stream" method, allowing all recyclables to be mixed together. As a result, we have seen a 30 percent increase in the tonnage that residents recycled over the last year and the carts have been so popular that residents request close to 200 additional carts per week.

We have been providing residents these big new recycling carts, but we also want to remind everyone how they can use them. Many people do not realize that almost all oi the household items which they may consider trash are actually recyclable. Beyond commonly considered recyclables such as plastic bottles, soda cans, and paper, we can now recycle hard plastic items such as toys and laundry baskets. More than 50 percent of household trash is recyclable, but the average Boston resident only recycles 14 percent of recyclable items. I am thrilled with the high level of interest and success that the program has experienced so quickly, but we can do better.

Over the past year, the City of Boston has delivered 55, 000 large 64-gallon wheeled carts to residents throughout the city. With this new program we have not only made it more convenient for residents to recycle, but we have saved money. For every ton of trash recycled, the City saves $70 on resident trash disposal fees. It actually much more expensive to remove and incinerate trash than it is to recycle. This program is very important to maintaining Boston's environmental and economic sustainability and it is our goal to continue to increase participation from residents each year.

I encourage anyone who has not yet taken advantage of the "single-stream" bins to take this small but important step to begin recycling. If you already recycle, take another look at what goes into your trash and what Items could actually be recyclable. Recycling is one of the easiest steps individuals can take to keep Boston's streets clean, reduce waste disposal costs, and preserve our neighborhoods and environment.

Carts are available to residents living in buildings with one to six units by calling 617-635-4500 or requesting them online at www.cityofboston.gov/ recycle.

Public Works will provide carts while supply lasts.



Copyright 2010 Post Gazette, Boston, Massachusetts. All Rights Reserved. This content, including derivations, may not be stored or distributed in any manner, disseminated, published, broadcast, rewritten or reproduced without express, written consent from SmallTownPapers, Inc.

© 2011 Post Gazette Boston, Massachusetts. All Rights Reserved. This content, including derivations, may not be stored or distributed in any manner, disseminated, published, broadcast, rewritten or reproduced without express, written consent from DAS.

Original Publication Date: September 17, 2010



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