Mayor Luke Ravenstahl announced today that Pittsburgh is joining a handful of cities along the East Coast to offer curbside single-stream recycling. The Mayor kicked off the "TogetherGreen" campaign at one of the nation's most energy-efficient buildings, Conservation Consultants Incorporated (CCI), located in the City's South Side neighborhood.
"It is an exciting time in Pittsburgh to be thinking black, gold and green," Mayor Ravenstahl said. "We will be moving our very successful single-stream recycling program to all of our neighborhoods, we are encouraging more recycling in our business districts, and all three black and gold teams are now recycling in their stadiums. Pittsburgh is 'TogetherGreen' and we are calling on our neighborhoods and businesses to join us in our effort."
Single-stream recycling allows residents to place all recyclables in the same blue bag, rather than separate them by material. In addition, items recycled at curbside will be expanded to include all paper materials such as newspapers, junk mail, magazines and phone books. The program was piloted last January in the City's central, downtown and eastern neighborhoods and will officially move Citywide on November 3.
"The convenience factor of not having to separate items plus the added bonus of putting all junk mail and newspapers onto the curb increased recycling tonnages by more than 30 percent during the pilot duration," said Mayor Ravenstahl. "In addition, we have already saved taxpayers more than $200,000 in landfill fees and will generate more than $700,000 in recycling revenue by the end of 2008."
The City receives nearly $50 per ton for recyclables and pays the landfill nearly $25 per ton for garbage. Money generated from recycling goes toward a trust fund which will allow the recycling program to pay for itself and continue to grow.
The City's recycling division has been reaching out to local businesses reminding them of state mandatory recycling guidelines and offering support to develop their own sustainable recycling program. Through the Mayor's Taking Care of Business Districts program, business districts will be receiving recycling bins this spring.
"We want to remind residents that recycling is mandatory by law, but we want to make it easy for you to follow the law," said Shawn Wigle, the City's recycling coordinator. "Please help us meet the challenge to turn trash into cash so that we can invest more into our recycling program and increase our City's green footprint."
Jimmy Sacco, Steelers executive director of stadium management, commented on the value of implementing recycling in and around Heinz Field.
"With help from the City, we've implemented an extremely successful recycling program. Everything from cooking oil to cardboard is being recycled. And with Steelers fans now recycling in the stadium, we are now the black, gold and green City."
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
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Office of Mayor Luke Ravenstahl
512 City County Building | 414 Grant Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
telephone: 412-255-2626 | facsimile: 412-255-2687