Louis Vitrone just shared that the upgrade equipment is being purchased and a February 2016 start date is being envisioned. That is great news for Westchester, as it will take an additional 1% of resources out of the waste stream and turn it into revenue for the County.
Original article from 2014:
Milk cartons and juice boxes are a common sight in schools, and so far they are being trashed in Westchester County. In New York City, they are part of the Commingled recycling stream.
We have worked closely with Louis Vitrone, Deputy Commissioner and Marianne Patronella, Director for Resource Management from Westchester County Environmental Service to bring carton recycling to Westchester. Just in November another meeting between the County and the Carton Council took place to find ways to make it work.
Part of the problem is that if a material is added to a recycling stream, it can really only be recycled if it is sorted. This sorting is done by a complicated sorting system which includes among other optical scanners to identify materials and then sort it via air stream into the correct container. The optical scanner itself is available and manageable in cost, but because Westchester’s Material Recovery Facility was one of the first built, its building doesn’t lend itself to easy equipment changes and the upgrading of the system is complicated and needs proper planning. Yesterday’s meeting was a giant step in the right direction.
Schools that are using commercial carters such as Suburban Carting can already recycle their milk cartons as it is brought to a different facility that can sort out milk cartons.
Cartons are about 1% of Westchester’s waste stream and are a very valuable resource.
Here is a little educational youtube clip how easy it can be.