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Single-stream recycling services come closer to reality in Charleston

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The availability of single-stream curbside recycling for Charleston residents is moving from just an idea to reality.

Councilman Ed Talkington, a West Side Democrat, told members of city council's Environment and Recycling Committee on Thursday that the city attorney's office is in the process of drafting a bill that would allow single-stream recycling for residents.

Single-stream recycling would allow Charleston residents to put all their recyclable materials -- except cardboard -- into one bag for pickup. City law mandates residents to sort their recyclables by type.

"Over the course of time, there should be some efficiencies gained," he said.

With single stream, residents would also be able to include cardboard in their curbside recycling, but that won't happen right away.

The idea to switch to single-stream was brought up at a Kanawha County Solid Waste Authority meeting earlier this month.

West Virginia Recycling Services owner George Hunyadi said at the time that having single-stream recycling would make recycling easier for residents. The new process would also allow him to process recyclables more efficiently, saving time and money.

Some cities, like South Charleston, already conduct single-stream recycling.

"Obviously, single-stream is the way the country's going," Talkington said.

Once the ordinance is written, it will be introduced to city council before being directed to one or more council committees. If approved at that level, the bill will return to city council for final approval.

In other business, the committee received updates regarding the city's landfill.

Landfill Engineer Sam Strickland said the gas-to-electric facility at the landfill is in the midst of a transfer among the entities that own the operation. He said Charleston Clean Energy, which already owns part of the facility, is purchasing the interests of the plant's other owner, Verdeo.

The transfer will not affect the facility's contract with the city. The city receives royalties from methane gas sold from the landfill to the gas-electric plant.

Strickland also said the landfill was considering other operational changes, including asking city council and the state Public Service Commission for an increase in the rate it can charge to process electronic waste.

Additionally, Strickland said the landfill considered constructing a solidification pit to hold Marcellus Shale waste, but those plans have since been canceled.

Contact writer Matt Murphy at Matt.Murphy@dailymail.com or 304-348-4817.


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