AUBURN, Ala.- Recently, the City of Auburn applied for a $350,000 grant from the Alabama Department of Environmental Management, which would help them start the process of becoming a single-stream recycling city.
Currently, folks have to separate all their recyclables prior to them being picked up. If the city becomes single-stream, folks will be able to put all their recyclables in one container where they will be picked up and taken to a material recovery center in Columbus.
ADEM calls this program a “hub and spoke” model, which means they are trying to get smaller cities and rural areas to transport their recyclables to a material recovery facility using the single-stream method.
The $350,000 would be used to purchase the containers and other materials to start the program.
Director of Environmental Services for the city, Timothy Woody said that the city is at a point where there is still growth in recycling, but not as much as they have seen in years past. He added that the city thinks it is a good time to convert to single-stream. Woody said that it would make things more efficient, as well as bring jobs to the material recovery center where the recyclables will be taken.
“It’s going to save us in landfill disposal fees as well,” Woody said. “That’s another way to look at it. For every ton that we won’t have to dispose of, right now we’re paying $25.59 per ton. So, for every ton we recycle, that’s $25.59 the city will save.”
Woody added that the city will learn if they receive the grant in May or June, and could start spending the money in October.