RecycleCT Launches RecycleCT Wizard App
App Builds on Successful Web-Based Search Tool, Will Increase Ease and Access to ‘What’s In, What’s Out’ Recycling Information
(HARTFORD)—The RecycleCT Foundation, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to promote the importance of managing materials more sustainably through waste reduction, reuse, recycling and composting, is adding an app to its very successful RecycleCT Wizard search tool. While the web-based search tool has been very successful, the app will increase ease and access, likely doubling the number of inquiries, and will add languages beyond English and Spanish including French, Simplified Chinese and Portuguese.
The RecycleCT Wizard App will help residents quickly discover which household items are acceptable in your recycling bin or not, tips for reusing certain materials, and how to contact local recycling coordinators, or transfer stations, to find out how to properly dispose of other materials.
“Now more than ever, increasing recycling, and decreasing contamination in our recycling stream is especially important for Connecticut residents,” Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) Commissioner Katie Dykes said. “Effective recycling is one of our most valuable tools to combat Connecticut’s waste disposal crisis. When DEEP convened the Connecticut Coalition for Sustainable Materials Management last year with more than 80 municipalities to explore sustainable materials management solutions, increasing recycling was chief among the solutions explored. Thank you to RecycleCT for taking what was already a tremendous educational tool for residents and making it even more accessible and easy to use with this new app.”
Municipalities are facing increasing costs for waste disposal in addition to increasing costs of recycling – often due to high contamination rates. Contamination refers to items not accepted in the recycling bin. Processing recyclables with lots of contamination or trash causes safety concerns to staff, jams equipment and reduces the value of the commodities. Increased levels of contamination in our recycling bins, increase contamination in the recycling stream leading to higher processing costs for materials recovery facilities (MRFs).
The Northeast Recycling Council (NERC)’s latest report on the blended value of a ton of materials marketed at MRFs in the region (including CT), revealed the average cost of processing a ton of materials is $84. They also reported that the value of clean materials is 18% higher than contaminated materials.
“Recycling markets are up now,” said Jennifer Heaton-Jones, Executive Director of Housatonic Resources Recovery Authority and RecycleCT Board member. “Markets are rebounding after China’s National Sword policy and COVID19. But we need to use the RecycleCT tools like the Wizard and new App to get cleaner material – meaning no trash in our recyclables – that’s the key.”
The Recycle CT Wizard search tool has already been utilized by many people trying to recycle correctly. To date, there have been over 707,000 searches through the RecycleCT Wizard with the top five searched materials being expanded polystyrene (Styrofoam), shredded paper, plastic bags, pizza boxes and plastic plant pots/trays.
The app builds upon this interest and increases ease of use by making the search tool available on mobile devices with the new mobile app. The app will provide an intuitive, easy way to find out what belongs in the mixed recycling (single stream) bin and what does not.
The RecycleCT Wizard App is available for download on these platforms: Apple and Google Stores
More information on recycling, what does and doesn’t go into your blue bin, and how to properly dispose of most items, can be found at RecycleCT.