In 2009 the City of Spartanburg began looking at ways to improve our recycling program. What developed was startling! Spartanburg sold its four recycling trucks. It moved it employees dedicated to recycling to other work. It retired its bailing station and improved the recycling program in the process.
The City of Spartanburg recycling program started in the late 1980’s with curb-side sort. Spartanburg supplied each resident one pickup a week on the same day as their garbage pickup. The residents placed out for pickup a sixteen gallon recycling bin. The items we accepted were newspaper, number 1 & 2 plastic bottles, aluminum, glass, (brown, clear and green). For safety, we used two employees per truck. The program required one team on Tuesday, two on Wednesday, and three on Thursday and Friday.
Spartanburg looked to see how it could improve the program and determined it needed to completely update its approach to the method of collecting our recycling. Spartanburg realized that curb-side sort was entirely too labor intensive and it was spending too much time processing our recyclables after they were collected. This cast study illustrates how Spartanburg improved its recycling program while generating big savings.