Curbside Recycling Will Be Implemented for Zippy Customers
Information Supplied by Zippy Disposal Service
As previously reported, the City of Chelan will be closing all operations at the North Chelan Recycling Center as of May 31. This closure will impact residential and commercial garbage pick up outside the City limits as well.
Where do we go from here?
The City of Chelan has chosen to implement an every other week co-mingled recycling program, a popular method used in the majority of programs across the state. All accepted materials are placed together unsorted in a 95 gallon tote, taken to the curb, and collected every other week. The City will recover the costs of their recycling program with amounts already included in their garbage collection rate, along with the savings from closing the recycling center.
For Lake Chelan area county residents living outside of the City of Chelan, Zippy Disposal will be implementing a similar every other week commingled recycling program beginning the week of May 14. Accepted materials include corrugated cardboard, newspaper, magazines, phonebooks, Plastic #1 & #2, aluminum cans, and tin cans. (see image above for clarification)
Customers who subscribe to garbage pick up through Zippy will receive a 95 gallon tote with a blue lid to use. All items acceptable for recycling can be placed together in the same tote – however, all material needs to fall out of the tote by the force of gravity. Large pieces of cardboard will need to be cut down to sizes that easily fall out of the tote when inverted.
Why are there fewer items accepted here than in other areas?
Prior to this year, the majority of recyclables collected on the west coast were sent to China. Beginning January 1, China set quality standards so high that most material no longer qualifies to be sent there. This has left a lot of material looking for a home, and has decimated market prices. We consulted with processors of recycled materials and were told to limit the materials collected to those previously mentioned. Recyclables are commodities and their value goes up and down based on supply and demand. There currently are no markets for glass, mixed paper, paper board, and plastics other than #1 and #2. If markets change, we may be able to add additional materials for collection.
What if I am not sure if an item can be recycled?
When in doubt, leave it out! Now more than ever, accepted materials need to be properly prepared according to instructions before placing in the tote. One tote of contaminated material can cause an entire bale to be rejected by the material recovery facility forcing it to be sent to the landfill. So, we will not be able to collect your tote if it contains contaminants or materials that are not properly prepared. If this happens, a note will be left as to what needs to be corrected.
Why is there a charge for the service?
First, rural collection routes are more expensive to operate than denser towns and cities. Second, our service is by subscription only and can be stopped for a portion of the year. Most towns including the City of Chelan have mandatory charges for their services on a year round basis, regardless if you are using the service or not. And third, material processing centers are now charging instead of paying for the recyclable material.
The Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission review and have final approval of all rates.
For additional information, please contact Zippy Customer Service at 509-682-5464.