The city of Delaware has been selected by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to receive one of 14 grants aimed at implementing recycling, litter prevention, market development, and scrap tire recycling programs. In total, the EPA has awarded more than $873,800 in grants this year to local governments, businesses, and nonprofit organizations throughout central Ohio.
Delaware is receiving $200,000 that will be used towards the purchase of a side-loading recycling truck, as well as educational outreach materials. The city will match the grant with a contribution of $206,000.
The side load recycling truck will be purchased at an estimated cost of $393,652.60 and will be placed into service in 2023, replacing a 2013 model. It will be the second of its kind in service in Delaware. Education and outreach materials purchased with the remaining funds will include fliers, door magnets, and stickers that can be placed on recycling containers.
“The City of Delaware actively supports recycling opportunities for both city residents and businesses through a comprehensive, weekly curbside recycling collection program that switched to single-stream collection in 2020,” Community Affairs Coordinator Lee Yoakum said of the grant. “With this grant, we can increase our collection program’s efficiency, while educating our curbside participants about recycling right.”
Yoakum added the city estimates that a side-loading, single hopper, compacting truck will increase production on routes by over 20% by reducing the manpower needed compared to the city’s older vehicles still in use.
“Additionally, in 2020 we collected 3,949 tons of recycling at a 23.47% diversion rate, and in 2021 we collected 4,294 tons at a 25.19% diversion rate,” he went on to say. “With an additional new side load vehicle and the continuation of the single-stream process, we hope to see a 100 tons-per-year increase in the amount of recyclables collected.
“Within the city’s program, we are seeing a significant increase in participation per the number of annual stops. In 2020, we had 389,934 stops collected, and in 2021, we had 430,934 stops. This is an increase of 10.5% more stops collected in just one year. It’s clear that recycling has become more common among residents, and we need to continue to keep up with that rise in usage and continue to update equipment.”
According to the city, 60.51% of curbside customers participated in recycling in 2021. A quarter — 25.19% — of the total solid waste collected was diverted from landfills. In total, crews made over 430,934 total stops last year.