Waste

  • City drop-off recycling centers operate at four locations accepting PET #1 and HDPE #2 plastics, paper, ferrous and non-ferrous cans, and cardboard and similar cardboard wastes (150-200 tons annually).
  • White goods are collected curbside and sold with the metal recycled.
  • Waste tires are collected curbside and recycled for reuse such as playground safety mats.
  • Electronic waste collected curbside is transported to the county for recycling.
  • Biosolids (sludge) from the wastewater treatment plant are recycled through land application, keeping a nutrient rich product out of the landfill.
  • Wood wastes are recycled and sold as unrefined mulch (2,800 tons annually).
  • Waste oil, antifreeze, solvents, batteries, and other materials generated in servicing the city vehicle fleet are recycled.
  • Scrap metal from city operations is sold to be recycled (BMP).
  • The use of digital cameras, and download directly to the files in PDF format, reducing printing materials and cost (BMP).
  • All site plan files and building plans have been scanned and stored electronically. This information is no longer printed and mailed – it is emailed. Large documents are "parked" on the ftp site for users to access.
  • Double-sided copying of paper for routine document distribution is followed (BMP).
  • The use of electronic documents, such as the monthly administrative report, is being maximized (BMP).
  • Recycling containers are being placed in all administrative office areas for use (BMP).
  • Doors, restroom stalls, lighting and plumbing fixtures were salvaged from the old Fairmount Elementary School for reuse with other city construction projects (BMP).
  • Park sign posts are now being replaced with "scrap" materials purchased locally.
  • All new trash receptacles and benches in parks are made of recycled plastic.
  • Recycling of bleacher seats for new picnic tables.
  • Plates and cups for city events are purchased with post-consumer content.
  • Recycled print cartridges are used (BMP).
  • Reuse of tapes and DVDs by BTN-TV16 whenever possible.
  • Bulk purchase of cleaning supplies with local mixing to reduce product packaging (BMP).
  • A subscription based curbside recycling program was instituted in 1992, but ended in 1997 due to lack of customers and high cost.
Simple Waste Statistics
According to the EPA, residents, businesses, and institutions in the United States "produced more than 251 million tons of municipal solid waste (MSW), which is approximately 4.6 pounds of waste per person per day" in 2006 alone.  Currently, in the United States, 32.15 percent of MSW is recovered and recycled or composted, 12.5 percent is burned at combustion facilities, and the remaining 55 % is disposed of in landfills.