A new drop-off system for glass will affect rural customers of the Monroe County Solid Waste Management District (District). For years the District has collected mixed colored glass in one bin. However, to improve its revenue stream and economize, the District is now having customers place clear glass bottles in one half of the bin and colored glass (brown, green, and blue) bottles in the other half. Signs are prominently posted.

The sorting change only affects rural sites: Oard Road, Dillman Road, New Unionville and Ellettsville. Central Recycling already has a sorting system in place. The District is asking the assistance of customers to implement this change successfully and reminds them to rinse and clean the containers.

If the glass is clean and sorted properly, the District will earn revenue when it is shipped to Strategic Materials in Indianapolis. Site operators and recycling center employees will help ensure that the glass is being sorted correctly and will check bottles for contaminants. It is very important that the glass is rinsed out and free of foreign materials, such as porcelain and carnival glass and mixed color glass. If a load is contaminated and rejected, the recyclers have wasted their time and effort, and the District receives no revenue from the load.

Strategic recycles glass into other glass products (50 percent) and fiberglass (20-25 percent). The rest goes into materials such as reflective materials for highways, concrete additives, scrubbing pads and ceramic floor tiles, among other items.

For information on other recyclables collected and hours at each site, the orange bag program, reuse programs and other programs at the District, call 349-2020 or visit our Web site. Every waste reduction effort counts. The District reminds the public to be part of a multitude of recycling efforts locally and globally to refuel our economy and keep our ecosystems and everyone healthy.

Elisa K. Pokral can be reached at epokral@mcswmd.org.