New recycling program in Freeborn County

New Recycling Efforts

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ALBERT LEA, MN — Reduce, reuse, recycle. Some in our area are trying to do more of that.

New technology has allowed Freeborn County and Waste Management to take more recyclable items. These items have what is considered some contamination.

Things like egg cartons that are not made with Styrofoam and plastics from things such as donut and cookie containers and what is typically the lid to pie containers will now be taken for recycling.

They hope to cut down on the over 20,000 tons of garbage that Freeborn County sent to landfills last year.

“30, 40 percent of that was recyclable materials that could be used over and over again, reducing our dependence on oil and reducing the litter that comes from landfills and hauling trash. It seems like kind of a shame to be throwing this stuff into a hole in the ground,” said Randy Tuchtenhagen, Director of Environmental Services for Freeborn County.

They will have a booth at the Freeborn County fair this year where they will inform people of what can and cannot be recycled.

Other parts of the new seven year contract include adding six areas to the garbage pickup route.

All homes that currently receive curbside pickup will receive a 64 gallon tip cart for the new garbage trucks that will begin running in the fall. The trucks have a robotic arm that will pick up the bins without the driver having to get out of the truck.

Because of that, Tuchtenhagen asks that there be no loose paper put into the recycling bins. He said wind may cause them to fly everywhere littering the streets.

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