The Delaware Solid Waste Authority (DSWA) in collaboration with The Town of Smyrna, The Recycling Partnership, and Waste Management is thrilled to announce the outstanding outcomes of Delaware’s first “Feet on the Street” Cart Tagging Program, a collaborative effort aimed at improving recycling practices and reducing contamination rates across communities nationwide.
The Recycling Partnerships “Feet on the Street” Cart Tagging Program, launched in partnership with municipalities, waste management companies, and environmentally conscious citizens, set out to address the persistent issue of recycling contamination in a hands-on and community-driven manner. Contamination occurs when non-recyclable materials are inadvertently placed in recycling bins, compromising the quality of collected recyclables and increasing the environmental and economic impact of recycling programs. The Town of Smyrna was selected as the first test program in the State of Delaware after a DSWA audit that identified elevated recycling contamination rates in the town.
The first scans of Smyrna residents’ recycling carts revealed a contamination rate of 34%. At the end of the six-week-long program through additional scans and education to residents, the final scan of the program revealed Smyrna’s contamination rate had dropped to just 5%, one of the lowest in the state.
The remarkable reduction in recycling contamination rates will not only lead to cost savings for the town but will also have a positive impact on the environment by reducing the amount of non-recyclable materials ending up in landfills.
Residents are encouraged to continue their commitment to responsible recycling by adhering to the guidelines provided by the Delaware Solid Waste Authority and Waste Management and promoting these practices within their social circles. With this continued collaboration, Smyrna aims to maintain and further improve its recycling contamination rate, setting a positive example for other communities to follow.