Update on Waste Management's Single-Stream Recycling - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Update on Waste Management's Single-Stream Recycling

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Waste Management has more than 62,000 customers in Reno -- and almost all of them have received their new recycle bins. More than 8,000 people chose to use the smaller 35-gallon garbage carts. Now Waste Management is in the process of picking up their older, larger ones.

Crews collected more than 1,000 on the first day. The addition of the new recycling containers, with the blue lids, means many residents are downsizing their trash bins. "There were about 8,300 customers that went to our website during the eight months when we had that registration open and they had selected smaller sizes. So, now we're going to be collecting those carts," says Sarah Polito.

Those collections started this week -- and will continue until March 21st.

Old carts should be left along the curb until crews pick them up. Officials say the transition to single-stream recycling is going well. "People are putting the correct materials into the recycling bins. So, we couldn't be happier."

There has been a learning curve for some customers though. Not just what can be recycled -- but when. "Some people are thinking that recycling is collected every single week, like their trash. When in fact, it is still every other week. Just like it was before."

Waste Management hopes at least 50% of customers will recycle under the new program. While it's too early to tell if that is happening yet -- some neighborhoods are seeing about 80% participation.

Polito says it means less trash is going to the landfill and has other benefits. "People can't come and scavenge on people's properties and steal it out. It can dump in there a lot easier."

While there have been reports of wind blowing recyclables around as it's dumped into the truck -- Waste Management says they are working on ways to correct that. But say the new method still cuts down on litter. "When it was just sitting at the curb, those materials could be blowing around all day long, versus that one point when it's being dumped into our truck."

Apartments are not required to participate in the recycling program. That's up to the property manager.

Waste Management is working on putting a calendar on their website that will let you know when your recycling day is.

Written by Paul Nelson

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