Officials report steady participation in curbside recycling program

Published 12:12 am Thursday, September 5, 2013

NATCHEZ — A little more than one month since Natchez’s curbside recycling program began, participation is steady, organizers say.

Waste Pro USA Division Manager Doug Atkins said participation is approximately 20 percent of the city’s 6,000 households.

“It may be one or two percent over that,” he said.

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Concordia Metal employee and Green Alliance chair Jim Smith said curbside recycling is averaging approximately 6 tons of material each week.

Waste Pro picks up the city’s curbside recycling on Wednesdays.

Concordia Metal sorts and recycles the items.

Smith said the recycled items have been clean and free of trash.

“It’s less than 2 percent trash, and we’re hoping (residents) will continue to keep trash out of the recycling,” he said.

The Green Alliance will begin a recycling incentive program in October, Smith said. The program will offer residents who recycle items from two of the three recycling categories — paper, plastic and metal — a $25 gift certificate from The Markets or Home Hardware. The winning residence’s recycling must also be free of trash.

Neighborhoods will be selected each week, starting with the neighborhoods with the least participation, for the promotion, Smith said.

Members of the alliance will also be going door-to-door to promote recycling in some neighborhoods to see if the promotion has an effect on participation, Smith said.

Atkins said he believes most of the kinks in the recycling program have been worked out. Atkins said residents should not bag their recyclables and should have their blue bins on the curb by 7 a.m.

Items that can be recycled include:

• No. 1 and No. 2 plastics, such as beverage bottles, condiment containers, shampoo bottles, milk jugs and other items. No. 2 food trays cannot be recycled.

• Paper and cardboard products, such as newspapers, magazines, phone books, catalogs, office paper, flattened corrugated cardboard, cereal boxes and other items.

Paper products must be kept dry.

• Metal items such as aluminum cans and steel vegetable and soup cans.

All containers must be rinsed and free of food.

Items that cannot be recycled are plastics Nos. 3-7, such as Styrofoam cups, Solo cups and plastic bags, glass, wax-covered cardboard, televisions or computer monitors.