JAMESTOWN – Citing recent challenges with the recycling market, the Jamestown Board of Public Utilities on Monday said it will begin picking up five different categories of recyclables, beginning Sept. 1.
BPU officials sent out a media release saying weekly collections will be as follows starting in September: paper, glass, metal, plastic and cardboard/box board. Each type of recyclable will have its own week of collection as part of a revised four-month schedule that will be sent out to customers in the coming weeks.
While the change is schedule takes place, customers will still be asked to continue participating in the orange RFID bin program, with regular recycling customers receiving a discounted monthly rate on their solid waste bills.
The reason for the change to five recycling categories is due to the BPU struggling this year with a recycling market that continues to change and to impact what Jamestown BPU recycling customers may or may not recycle. Regional recycling vendors face continuing challenges of where they can sell or disperse recyclables.
“As China has closed its doors to American recyclables, when it once took delivery of a majority of the U.S. recycling market, national and regional vendors are working to find outlets for their products,” the media release stated. “These international recycling market changes mean that American vendors have had to restrict what recyclables they accept and in what combination they can economically process.”
“For instance, BPU paper recyclables will no longer be received by our recycling vendors when mixed with cardboard and box board. While BPU garbage disposal costs currently are $28.50 a ton at the landfill, for example, fees for recycling of paper with cardboard/box board together fluctuate and recently have cost more than $100 a ton. This expense is not sustainable for the BPU and its Solid Waste customers, as the BPU strives to keep rates at a reasonably priced level for residents.”
“We understand that recycling customers may be dismayed by recent changes in what recycling we can accept and in how we continue to collect it,” notes BPU General Manager David Leathers. “Please know that we are endeavoring to find options to keep recycling and garbage collection manageable and affordable for our residents. Affordable rates for our customers and reliable services are our highest concerns.”
The revised recycling calendar will be in effect from September, 2019, through the end of this year. The revised calendars will be included with all garbage bills. The amended schedule is also posted on the utility website at JamestownBPU.com on the home page and on the Solid Waste section. Calendars also are available in the BPU Customer Service Office, 92 Steele Street.
For questions or to request a revised calendar, customers may contact the Garbage Hotline at 661-1651, Communications at 661-1680 or Customer Service at 661-1660.