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[GreenYes] Re: Haulers/Carters who get *too* creative create headaches.

No question this is heading towards a train wreck. Versions of this
³orientation² towards office and business recycling are going on all over
the country right now. There may be legitimate goodwill on the part of
haulers today, but if markets dip below an acceptable margin, the cost of
picking through bags the way you describe will become prohibitive. It is
very likely that someone in your office will be get a call asking whether
your trash haulers are really recycling. Also, when customers contaminate
their recyclables, ?dirty² MRFs are faced with a dilemma of either charging
to handle contaminated recycling as trash or telling the hauler not to bring
the stuff in. Additionally, in talking with some MRF operators over the
years, they often note what they call ³cross contamination² where stuff just
gets in the wrong pile on-site and then they have a mess on their hands.

All that said, the real issue is the economic one. What are these people
paying for service? Is this just a way for haulers to charge full price for
trucking and disposal, but then skimming at the MRF? Do they have a lower
charge for accounts that include recycling? How do they set up their
accounting system to at least give credit for recycling? If you¹re talking
about mixed loads with multiple customers in front or rear load routes, this
is just a disaster. I know they¹re trying to accommodate the perceived space
problem for dumpsters and compactors, but it¹s not going to work over the
long haul. It just isn¹t.

David Biddle, Executive Director
Greater Philadelphia Commercial Recycling Council
P.O. Box 4037
Philadelphia, PA 19118

215-247-3090 (desk)
215-432-8225 (cell)


Read In Business magazine to learn about sustainable
businesses in communities across North America!
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on 1/25/07 5:22 PM, RecycleBizCzar at Russell.Klein@no.address wrote:

> Our office is looking for the best means to monitor or regulate a
> slowly increasing trend with haulers/carters.
> These haulers set up customers with _one_ external collection
> container, provided they agree to use a 'transparent bag' system.
> Solid waste is to be disposed of in opaque bags by the cleaning staff
> whereas recyclables are placed in clear bags. At the loading doc, a
> single dumpster or _compactor_ (common!) is serviced by a single truck.
> Later, at the 'dirty MRF', the dark bags are tossed aside while the
> clear bags are broken open to recover recyclables.
> Currently, one service has been given permission from our office
> management to operate this way, for the time being. It seems however,
> other companies are starting to do the same thing - advising
> customers to do the 'colored bag' system, which these haulers claim
> will be taken to the facility of the earlier-mentioned MRF.
> IMHO, storage in a single container would seem to violate the spirit of
> our city's commercial recycling law (cuz the Letter is, perhaps
> subject to interpretation, now that I re-read it). Of course, I'm
> concerned about *the appearance* to the public of throwing all
> materials into one container... And *the appearance* of allowing a
> truck to consume everything within one chamber; and the opportunity for
> those who claim to tip at the one 'approved' MRF, subsequently
> landfilling/incinerating instead.
> As to the 'spirit' of the law... at times like this, I get the
> impression our agency prioritizes pragmatic concerns over dogmatic
> ones: ie. if the former may be more successful at getting us to our
> goal, then why fix what "ain't broke".
> What I want to know is: what happens a few chapters later in this
> book? If we don't clamp down on this now, is there a point at which
> abuse becomes out of control? Or a point where it alienates the
> cynical public so far that it discourages participation?
> Any thoughts?
> >

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