Wednesday, April 1st, 2009

Arlington County (Va.) Leads the Way in Recycling Plastics

Arlington County (Va.) may be the smallest self-governing county in the United States (just under 26 square miles), but as of April 1, Arlington will be leading the way when it comes to recycling plastics. Most people know of Arlington due to its iconic landmarks including the Pentagon, Arlington Cemetery and the U.S Marine Corp Memorial (commonly referred to as the Iwo Jima Memorial). However, beginning on April 1, Arlington is setting a new landmark by becoming one of the relatively few counties in the United States to provide curbside collection of all plastic containers (regardless of its resin identification code), aerosol cans, plastic bags, rigid plastics, aluminum foil and trays, milk and juice cartons, books and cardboard boxes. Each resident will receive a new wheeled recycling cart (plastic, of course) and will no longer be required to separate out the commingled material from paper products.

In short, no-one in Arlington will have an excuse anymore for not recycling their plastics! On the contrary, Arlington residents will now be able to recycle virtually everything at the curb: recycling using a recycling cart, electronics waste collection by request, white goods (major appliances)/metal collection by request, brush collection by request, spring yard waste collection, leaf vacuum collection, leaf bio-bag collection, Christmas tree collection, car battery collection, regular refuse collection using a trash cart and bulky trash collection.

As a result of these efforts, Arlington reported a recycling rate of 40.3 percent in 2007 (well above the 37 perccent recycling rate target that the county set just three years ago for 2014). With this latest recycling initiative, Arlington is well on track to exceed the goal for 2024 of 47 percent. Congratulations, Arlington!

What is your state or county doing to increase recycling?

One Response to “Arlington County (Va.) Leads the Way in Recycling Plastics”

  1. I do not believe that the information listed here is correct, or am I misunderstanding something.

    According to Arlington’s website, they cannot accept all plastic types.

    http://www.arlingtonva.us/departments/EnvironmentalServices/EnvironmentalServicesFaq.aspx#why_not_recy

    See FAQ on certain plastic types that are not currently accepted.

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