Boston Adopts New Recycling Program

Posted on November 29, 2009 by


By Cason Latimer

In July mayor Thomas Menino unveiled the new recycling system that the Boston area will use, called single stream recycling. This recycling system is intended to increase the percentage of items that are recycled and cut some costs by making the whole process less complicated for the recyclers and the recycling management company through new automated sorting systems.

Boston is not the first city to adopt this system, Baltimore Maryland has been using single stream since 2007 with great success. The Boston program has even had an overall increase of 12% more received recyclables in just the first three months of the program’s operation.

One feature of the new program is that Bostonians are receiving large recycling bins that are shared in residences of 6 or less units. The bins are to all be delivered by June 2010.  I personally noted that my apartment’s bin was delivered last week, which was what alerted me to this program. I have also noticed that using the new bins are much more convenient because the recyclables don’t pile up indoors when they can just be dumped in the bin outside. Another advantage of the bins is that they have lids that protect cardboard from getting rained on.

The main perk of single stream recycling is the convenience that it allows. The recyclables no long have to be sorted by residents, which can be a time consuming and annoying process. The way the recycling is now sorted is through the use of an automatic sorting machine called an MRF.

Here is an interesting video on how a sorting machine works.

Posted in: Boston, Commuters