June 2018
E-newsletter highlighting grant deadlines, upcoming workshops and available resources for municipal recycling and solid waste leaders.
Programs and Approaches that Respond to the Waste Crisis
Waste Reduction Programs

Backyard composting, according to a new report from the Institute of Local Self Reliance, shows that for "every 10,000 households composting at home, between 1,400 and 5,000 tons per year could be diverted from curbside collection, with potential savings in avoided disposal costs alone ranging from $72,000 to $250,000."  Full ILSR Report

  • Provide composting bins to residents either through a bulk contract or subsidizing bins.
  • Offer education and training.
  • Include worm or vermicomposting bins/education.
  • Tie training and workshops with bin distribution events.

If you're not aware, textiles is a category of material that includes clothing, but also bedding, backpacks, curtains, towels, stuffed animals and unwearable clothes. 

Unfortunately, only 15% of textiles are donated for reuse or recycling in the U.S. AND sadly, textiles is often found in curbside mixed recycling bins - ending up as contamination, and not reused or recycled.

A number of companies are available to work with your community - placing collection bins at schools, municipal community centers, town halls, etc. Learn more about how to set up a textile collection program in your town or school.
Save Money and Reduce Trash (SMART)
Give residents an economic incentive to manage materials differently.
In SMART communities, residents pay for how much trash they throw away, in the same way that residents are charged for electricity, gas, and other utilities. Giving residents the control over how much they spend on trash provides an incentive to engage in smart purchasing, better recycling, reuse/donation activities and even backyard composting!  SMART programs reduce trash by 40% or more which directly translates to savings to the municipality in avoided disposal costs. Municipalities also benefit from a 20-35% increase in recycling tonnage when SMART is implemented curbside.

The chart below benchmarks annual residential per capita disposal data for 15 CT municipalities. The average MA SMART community generates 432 pounds of residential waste per capita, a savings of 364 pounds per capita over the average of 15 CT municipalities. SMART programs create immediate results, dropping disposal to between 325-450 pounds per capita, resulting in instant savings to the town.

If interested in learning more, please contact Jennifer.Weymouth@ct.gov .
Hauler registration
Municipalities are required to register private collectors operating within the municipality on an annual basis ( CGS Sec. 22a-220a(d)(1) ). This applies to any collector hauling solid waste generated by residential, business, commercial or other establishments. By having a handle on collectors operating in your town, you will better be able to enforce municipal ordinances and recycling requirements. For more information, please contact Peter.Brunelli@ct.gov
Systems Approach
Product Stewardship/EPR

There are a number of product stewardship programs in Connecticut, including four EPR (extended producer responsibility) programs. 

Are you participating in them to help you reduce waste, recover more materials through recycling and save on disposal costs? You can help all these efforts by promoting them to your residents.

EPR Programs in Connecticut

Paint: Coordinated by PaintCare. Program is free. Drop-off sites located throughout CT at retail locations, transfer stations and building material reuse businesses. Open to commercial painters too. 

Mattresses: Coordinated by the Mattress Recycling Council. Drop-off sites at municipal transfer stations. Also coordinates special one-day events. Open to commercial businesses such as motels, hotels, inns, colleges, hospitals etc. www.

Electronics: Overseen by CT DEEP; requires contracting with DEEP "Certified Electronic Recyclers." Municipalities are required to provide opportunities for residents to have access to free electronics recycling for televisions, monitors and computers.

Thermostats: Coordinated by the Thermostat Recycling Council  (TRC). TRC provides free collection of mercury containing thermostats from residents and HVAC and demolition contractors.

Voluntary programs including the CT WRAP program promoting plastic film/bags "return to retail" program, and the Call2Recycle "return to retail" program that collects batteries.
Other Product Categories to consider? 

In 2012, a CT stewardship product category priority list was created by CT DEEP, the CT Product Stewardship Council and other stakeholders. Since then other states have expanded product categories to include solar panels and marine debris. If you're interested in getting more engaged in stewardship programs in CT contact Tom Metzner at CT DEEP or the CT Product Stewardship Council.
Municipal Training from CCM

Thursday, June 14, 2018
9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Registration beings at 8:30 a.m.

Saving Municipal Tax Dollars through Recycling
Berlin Community Center
230 Kensington Road
Berlin, CT 06037

Non-Members - $120 per attendee
FREE to CCM-Members

The workshop will include a presentation followed by ample time for Q&A. The presentation will describe the concept of product stewardship, how Connecticut already benefits from product stewardship for electronics, mattresses, paint, and thermostats, and how applying product stewardship to packaging and printed paper could save municipalities up to $20m - $30m per year in Connecticut.

Who Should Attend:
Mayors/First Selectmen
Town/City Managers
Finance Directors & Personnel
Town/City Attorneys
Director of Public Works
Environmental Managers & Personnel
Economic Development Directors & Personnel
Community Development Personnel
Board, Commission, and Committee Members
Update municipal ordinances
Municipalities with updated ordinances reflecting current state solid waste and recycling laws as well as a plan for residential and commercial outreach and enforcement will enhance municipal recycling programs. For more information, please contact Peter.Brunelli@ct.gov .
Are You Paying a Tip Fee for Recyclables?

We have all heard about China’s recent recycling import restrictions and their effect on US recycling market conditions.  DEEP would like to better understand how those restrictions are specifically affecting CT municipal recycling programs. Has there been any recent and/or anticipated changes in municipal recycling or solid waste contracts? Any changes in municipal recycling revenue or municipal recycling tipping fee charges?
Within the next few weeks DEEP will be sending municipalities a link to a short survey regarding any such changes. Your feedback is greatly appreciated. If you want to contact Judy Belaval at DEEP before that you can reach her at (860) 424-3237 or judy.belaval@ct.gov.

Please be aware that DEEP is also planning to reach out to CT recycling facilities and CT recycling brokers regarding their level of success in identifying markets still viable in China and/or alternative markets for those recyclables originally marketed to China and efforts to improve quality of recyclables sent out from their facilities.
What's IN? What's OUT?
Recent Questions from you and your colleagues
Tennis Ball Containers

Plastic with metal rim = OUT
All metal = IN

This is a tough one to convey to residents. Traditionally tennis cans were metal cans, and now most are plastic (PET #1) but usually with a metal rim. MRF operators all agreed - if they are all metal they will accept, but the new design with plastic and metal are OUT.
Mylar balloons - is this a type of film that could go with plastic film at the retail store?


While "mylar" is a type of polyethylene terephthalate film, balloons, decorate wrapping and other materials made from Mylar are have finishes that make it undesirable, ie a contaminate in plastic film recycling at grocers and/or other retail.

Food insulation packaging. 

This is OUT!

With increased use of home delivery programs like Blue Apron and Hello Fresh comes an increase of questions about the packaging from these products - especially since they have labels not only claiming "recyclable" but also "acceptable in curbside programs." 

Note, the cardboard box is IN, but if the insulation is attached to the box, the entire item is OUT.

Simple rule of thumb. Is it a container? If not, it is OUT of the curbside mixed recycling program.
What about ice packs or gel packs used to keep food and other items cold during transportation?

This is OUT! 

Clearly there are reuse options here as long as the pack isn't ripped or has holes. These are safe to dispose of in the regular trash.
     Upcoming Events:

Thursday, June 14, 2018 - 9:00am - 12:00pm - Saving Municipal Tax Dollars through Recycling . Berlin Community Center, 230 Kensington Road, Berlin, CT 06037. Check in begins 8:30am. Free to CCM member municipalities, $120 non members. Hosted by CCM.  Contact CCM to see if there are still spaces left.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018 - 9:30-11:30am - Solid Waste Advisory Committing meeting. McCarthy Auditorium, CT DEEP, 79 Elm Street, Hartford, CT 06106. Upcoming and past agendas and presentations

Monday, July 16, 2018 - 2:00-3:30pm - Organics Recycling: Municipal Programs webinar - Jennifer Heaton-Jones, HRRA; John Phillips, City of West Hartford; Alyssa Norwood, SustainableCT and Caren Harder, CT DEEP. Hosted by CT DEEP.
Have an idea or topic for future municipal recycling conference call/webinar? Let us know what you and your colleagues would like to learn more about. Contact Sherill Baldwin .
CT DEEP | Source Reduction & Recycling Group | 860-424-4193 | www.ct.gov/deep/recycle