Business simplifying recycling for its customers in the city

PLATTSBURGH - From plastics to cardboard and everything in between, it can be confusing what can be recycled and what cannot. Now, Casella Waste Management is doing recycling made easy.

In November, Casella began to offer a new program to its customers - Zero-Sort Recycling.

"I think as everybody knows, we've been limited on what we can recycle" said market area manager Bill Meyers. "The biggest thing that I always see that pops out is plastics. Ones and twos, ones and twos. Now, ones through seven. Think about what you can pull out of your waste drain."

Meyers explained those who choose to take part in the program are given a 96 gallon container for all recyclables, including cardboard products such as toilet paper rolls and corrugated boxes; glass products such as wine and beer bottles of all colors; metal products such as pet-food containers and soup cans; paper products such as calendars and envelopes; and plastics such as ketchup and laundry detergent bottles.

"You don't have to sort it, just make sure it's clean, throw it all loose inside the container," said Meyers. "I think if you do those two things, people typically get very excited and say 'Okay, sign me up.'"

Once the recycling container is picked up, on an every other week basis, the containers are brought back to Casella.

"It's emptied out inside a building and from there it's scooped up and placed inside a compactor, which compacts it into a 53-foot trailer," said Meyers. "It compacts that material inside that trailer and once that trailer is full, it's then hauled over to the Chittenden Solid Waste District in Burlington."

Meyers said the solid waste district goes through a process in which the materials are separated.

"It gets sorted through conveyors, magnets, infrared lights and then at the very end of the process ... it comes out in relatively clean bails, separate," he explained.

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