Recycling in Chicagoland: We’re doing it wrong and soon it’ll cost more
by Ben Bradley (WGN9)
CHICAGO — Recycling needs to be rebooted. That’s the opinion of experts as commodity prices crash and many residents still can’t recycle right.
WGN Investigates rode along one recycling truck’s route in Oak Lawn and followed it to the yard to see how much of the material residents put in their green carts is actually recyclable.
“Believe it or not we get a lot of diapers,” said Pete Keller of Republic Services which handles waste hauling for dozens of Chicago suburbs.
Twenty to 25% of most loads are unrecyclable, according to Republic.
“There’s actually a term for that in our industry,” Keller said. “It’s called ‘wish-cycling.’ Well-intentioned people doing more harm than good.”
The contamination problem in south suburban Posen is so bad the village president is scrapping the suburb’s recycling program effective in October.
“It’s just not working,” Frank Podbielniak said. “We don’t know any other way to educate the public to do it the right way.”
While recycling advocates say dumping a program is not the right way to go they concede the economics have changed since China decided to stop accepting much of what Americans recycle. Haulers like Republic Services are now cautioning customers that they may soon be asked to pay more to recycle.
“Without the commodity value, without a willingness to pay more, this business is not sustainable long term,” said Keller.
How much more? Watch the full story above.
Wondering what you CAN and CANNOT recycle? It varies by community and waste hauler. Here are some helpful links:
Waste Management (Maple Park’s Waste Hauler): https://www.wm.com/thinkgreen/what-can-i-recycle.jsp
Mixed Curbside Residential Recycling Myths
- It’s time to get back to the basics of good recycling
- Identify myths of recycling, and become an expert
- Understand the basic recycling rules and tips
For more information, read the
Recycling Myths Flyer (545 downloads)
, or visit website.
Village of Maple Park Residents
Garbage Pickup Information
At Your Door Special Collection
FEBRUARY 1ST IS FAST APPROACHING! GOOD CHANGES ARE COMING TO GARBAGE IN MAPLE PARK!
You may have already received your first bill from Waste Management. It is NOT an error. Residents will now be billed from Waste Management for garbage pickup. Look carefully, though, because they will bill in advance (the first bill is for February, March and April). You will have one more water bill with garbage for January on it. We know this can be a little confusing, so please call the office if you have questions! (815) 827-3309.
The Village of Maple Park and Waste Management have entered into a new five agreement for waste hauling service effective February 1, 2019. The new monthly rate effective February 1, 2019 is $18.72 per home.
The agreement provides residents with the following new services.
- Household hazardous waste and electronics pickup through Waste Management’s At Your Door Special Collection. Service is unlimited and included in your monthly rate. See the other side of this flyer for more program details.
- Residents currently have 64 gallon refuse carts. Residents have the option of a larger 96 gallon refuse cart. Seniors have the option of a smaller 35 gallon cart. Please contact Village Hall before December 14, 2018 to request a different cart size. Cart swap requests made after December 14, 2018 will be subject to a cart exchange fee.
- Residents currently have 64 gallon recycle carts. Residents have the option of a larger 96 gallon or a smaller 35 gallon recycle cart. Please contact Village Hall before December 14, 2018 to request a different cart size. Cart swap requests made after December 14, 2018 will be subject to a cart exchange fee.
- Beginning February 1, 2019, residents will be billed direct from Waste Management. Residents will be billed quarterly in advance.
- Payment terms are net 30 days from date of invoice with late fees being assessed after day 30. There is a resume service fee for residents on cutoff status due to non-payment.
- The following is a summary of the billing transition schedule.
- The Village, who bills in arrears, will invoice November & December in early January.
- Waste Management will mail residents their first invoice at the end of January for the months of February, March and April.
- The Village will invoice January in early March.
- Residents may sign up for Automatic Payments by going online to www.wm.com under My Account. A customer id which is on the invoice is required to sign up.
- Residents can manage their account through the above websites or through Waste Management’s Mobile App. Waste Management’s Customer Service is also available through e-mail at email@example.com or over the phone at 800-964-8988 to assist you.
- Please visit home.wm.com/maple-park for a summary of services available to you as a resident of Maple Park.
At Your Door brochure (341 downloads)
Waste Management will end yard waste pickup as of November 30, 2015. Pickup will resume April 30, 2015. Please do not rake your leaves into the street, as it will clog the storm sewer.