Juneau will soon have two options for recycling their household waste.
The waste transportation company Alaska Pacific Environmental Services dba Arrow Refuse recently offered subscriptions to its new curbside recycling service. At the same time the City and Borough of Juneau plans to continue its source-separated recycling service at 5601 Tonsgard Court.
Arrow plans to collect waste from its 96-gallon curbside recycling carts every other week. Recycling carts have blue lids, garbage carts black. Arrow accepts aluminum, steel and tin cans, mixed paper, newspaper, cardboard and plastic, cleaned of food residue. No glass or hardbound books. The service costs $3.11 per month.
The City and Borough of Juneau is required by the federal government to provide service for disposal of hazardous household waste, CBJ Public Works Director Kirk Duncan said. It offers recycling to reduce the amount of waste going into the landfill, extending its life.
Juneau residents pay a $4 fee on their utility bill to pay for the hazardous waste and recycling services. Recycling takes up $1.25 of that, Duncan said.
Arrow’s competition for recyclable material will not hinder CBJ’s program.
“We’re still providing the same level of service,” Duncan said. People can use Arrow’s curbside recycling, “or they can still continue to bring source separates recycling to the landfill,” he said.
Waste Management owns the landfill at 5601 Tonsgard Court in Lemon Creek.
The city’s household hazardous waste and junk car programs may move near its recycling center if negotiations with Waste management are successful, Duncan said.
CBJ also takes the approximately 400 cars junked each year. Currently junk cars are disposed of at the landfill.
“Something has to happen to all of those junk cars,” Duncan said.
The recycle center at Tonsgard Court requires users to separate recyclables before disposing. Arrow Refuse plans to compact the materials together and send to a materials recycling facility, of which only a couple take compacted, comingled recycling in the Seattle area, Duncan said.
CBJ recycling “goes to where-ever Waste Management can get the best price,” Duncan said.
For the CBJ’s service, all recyclables, excluding glass, are baled and shipped south for recycling.
“People see the glass and get upset,” Duncan said. “You toss a couple pickle jars into the dumpster,” he said, “that doesn’t get recycled.”
Duncan said the CBJ reuses its glass instead of recycling it.
The glass is ground down and spread on the landfill in lieu of bringing in another material.
“Everything else gets recycled, it gets baled and sent to Seattle,” Duncan said.
Arrow Refuse does not accept glass for recycling.
Co-mingling recycled waste is a new concept and prices remain volatile and depend on regional markets, Duncan said. Co-mingled waste fetches $49 per ton, down from $100 per ton last year, Duncan said.
“That is our issue with co-mingling,” Duncan said. “You end up with a product with much less resale value.”
Compare this price to that of cardboard, which right now is approximately $150 per ton, Duncan said. Aluminum goes for $1,800 per ton.
Duncan said whatever method, recycling provides a diversion from disposal in valuable landfill space.
“Which is a positive thing,” Duncan said.
City Code related to storage of garbage within the borough has not changed and remains in effect, according to a CBJ press release.
For more information about Arrow Refuse’s curbside recycling, call 523-5890 or visit bit.ly/IQZvNP..
For more information on the CBJ’s recycling and hazardous waste program contact CBJ Solid Waste Coordinator, Jim Penor, at 780-6009.
• Contact reporter Russell Stigall at 523-2276 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.