CW embraces recycling

By Linda Dillman
Staff Writer

Canal Winchester residents are embracing recycling in a big way by keeping boxes, paper, glass, and plastic containers from bogging down landfills.

“We were regularly hearing from residents that wished we offered a curbside solution,” said Canal Winchester City Events and Communications Coordinator Hannah Woodruff. “Now that we are offering it, we’ve heard from several residents that say they’ve found themselves filling their recycling bin more than their trash bin each week. When you look at the numbers, it is clear our residents appreciate and utilize the service.”

In 2021, Canal Winchester residents recycled 575.3 tons of material. In 2022, the number rose to nearly 650.7 tons. Residents are charged one fee – $19.50 per month – for recycling and trash collection.

The city entered into a contract with Rumpke in October 2020 for both residential waste and recycling services. Prior to the contract, the city itself used Waste Management for waste only. However, there were resident-led and student-led initiatives in the community, including a bi-weekly collection at the high school.

Rumpke operates a “single stream” recycling system. Residents can recycle all of their items in one bin instead of sorting them out. Each resident is provided a 65-gallon recycling cart. If a resident has extra recyclables, the cart can be exchanged for a 95-gallon cart.

“We have heard a lot of positive feedback from the community since implementing the program,” said Canal Winchester Public Service Director Matt Peoples, who said there are 2,823 residential recycling containers in use throughout the city. “We have recycling containers in our offices and encourage staff to recycle when they can. The most common materials we recycle are paper and cardboard. We have a large recycle dumpster at our public works facility that Rumpke regularly picks up.”

As for hiccups, Peoples said the company reported there are a few recycling issues seen in all communities they service, mostly related to unacceptable items such as clothing, batteries, or other hazardous materials that make it to the recycling center. Other common issues include bagging recyclables and not breaking down cardboard boxes.

“We plan to continue educating residents on the program to improve our overall recycling efforts while also continuing our year-over-year growth,” said Peoples. “During the brief time we’ve contracted with Rumpke, there have been a lot of changes to the program. In the last two years they added new acceptable materials—plastic tubs, and aluminum and plastic cups.

Peoples said the city tries to provide reminders about recycling, including acceptable materials and any schedule changes due to holidays, via social media, newsletters, and the city’s website.

Residents can sign up to receive alerts from when the collection schedule changes due to holidays. Rumpke also sends out an annual notice with “recycling right” information. For the most up-to-date information, visit rumpke.com or call 1-800-828-8171.

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