All single-family and multi-family residents must recycle and the town limits how much trash can be set out each week. One year after implementing the program, recycling tonnage increased by 23% and trash tonnage decreased by 9%, saving the town $43,000 in disposal costs.
Danvers transitioned to a mandatory recycling policy and upgraded to weekly recycling service in an effort to save money and encourage recycling. An estimated 70% of residents were participating in the program already. Single-family and multi-family residents recycle mixed paper in one bin and glass, metal and plastic containers in a separate bin. Mandatory recyclables also include those listed under the Massachusetts’s state waste ban.
The city contracts with a private hauler to provide trash and recycling service to all the town’s residents. The town was able to upgrade to weekly recycling collection at no additional cost by decreasing the maximum amount of trash from five barrels to three barrels (single-family households only). Trash barrels may not exceed 45 gallons and/or 50 pounds. Yard waste is collected seasonally.
One year after implementing the Mandatory Recycling and Trash Reduction Program, recycling tonnage was increased by 23% and trash tonnage decreased by 9%, diverting $43,000 in disposal costs. Danvers spends over $500,000 in trash disposal, with nearly 8000 tons of waste and disposal rates near $70 per ton at the nearby trash incinerator.
The town offered a grace period of a few weeks for residents to adjust to the program. The recycling bin must be placed out at the curb every week in order for the trash to be collected—the trash hauler will not pick up trash from households that do not set out their recycling bin.
The town educated residents about the program change through direct mailing, roadside message boards and reverse 911 phone calls.