Patrick Center February 24, 2014 | WGVU It’s loud and the odors? Be glad its radio.Inside Kent County’s Department of Public Works Recycling and Education Center there are conveyer belts zigging and zagging, up-and-down, taking aluminum cans, plastic bottles and cardboard boxes for a ride through a number of machines sorting them out into “like” piles using optical scanners.
“And what the optical scanner can do is it detects number one plastics those are like your water bottles. Then you’re going to hear the little ‘Shh-shh.’ That’s a blower blowing those bottles off onto another conveyer belt after they’ve been detected.”
That’s Allie Kneisel explaining the single stream sorting process. One managing year-over-year increases in waste as more Kent County residents recycle. Every year since the recycling center opened in 2010, there’s been a 7-10 percent increase. Record levels in 2013 of nearly 31,000 tons. That’s the weight of small cruise ship.
“We’re growing at a much faster rate than we expected and we anticipate that it’s going to continue going in that direction.”
“I’m Kristen Wieland and I’m recycling manager for the Kent County Department of Public Works.She tells me the county sold most of the recyclables to vendors generating $2.5 million.
“It’s not that that’s a profit for us. We have this new building that we’re trying to pay for and there’s a lot that goes into processing the recyclables. But we’re happy to report that our department as a whole doesn’t draw any tax dollars so we’re sort of self-sustaining organization.”
The growing demand of the recycling center prompted a vote of the Kent County Board of Commissioners to hire an additional Maintenance Technician. ListenDownload
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