According to an article in the Missoulian, Phoenix-based Republic Services is expanding curbside recycling in the city in response to statistical data regarding the city’s recycling performance.
The statistics, compiled by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Montana Department of Environmental Quality, found only 19 percent of Missoula residents recycle. This is below both the state average of 21.9 percent and the national average of 34.5 percent.
Republic’s All-In-One program, which commenced in May, is a single-stream recycling program that accepts all recyclables in a single container except glass. The recyclables are then taken to a processing facility in Seattle, the article says. Pickup will occur every two weeks for $12 per month.
Jennifer Bernosky of Republic Services told the Missoulian she was hired in October 2014 to determine how to improve recycling efforts in the city. The biggest need, she found after speaking to community officials and residents, was for an increase in the frequency of collection.
“They had way too much for once a month,” Bernosky told the newspaper. “So we made sure we could support it from an operational perspective and made it more frequent and rolled back the cost to encourage folks to give it a try. So far the response has been really good.”
Roughly 400 customers have signed up for the recycling program, according to the article. Tracy Skenandore, a spokesperson for Republic Services, told the newspaper that the company is conducting a target marketing strategy to gain new converts.
“As we work to better inform and educate and build awareness of what can and can’t be recycled, ultimately we’ll be able to divert more valuable materials from landfills,” Skenandore said.