One of the many ways to keep New Albany a clean city is simply by recycling,
and with the single stream recycling at the QRS Recycling Facility located at 1001 West Floyd Street, it is easier today than ever.
“It’s very simple. With single stream, there is no separating, other than good trash, which is what we call material that is recyclable, from bad trash, which has to go to the landfill,” said Mike Laverty of QRS Recycling. Single stream was initiated five years ago with the City of Louisville signing on as the first major account.
The material set inside the recycling tubs must be recyclable, but there is no longer the need to separate the plastic, the paper, the cardboard or even the cans from each other. This material is set out on the curb and picked up by Ecotech on the same day as the trash pickup. There is no additional charges for this and no need to notify anyone. If the individual did not receive the appropriate container when the program began several years ago, he or she may purchase a similar container at another store. For most residents, curbside pick-up is the easiest way to recycle.
Residents still have the option of separating and delivering their recycling to the QRS facility. And of course, in the case of delivering materials such as cans or cardboard, a small payment is made depending on the weight of the delivery. According to Laverty, when the price of cardboard is high, the delivery increases. Copper and aluminum are also popular. Note that proper identification is required for certain items in order to minimize the delivery of stolen materials.
For businesses, recycling is in fact the way to go.
“It’s cheaper to recycle than it is to throw it away. A landfill charges you to dispose of waste by burying it, but we don’t charge you to dispose of waste because we don’t dispose,” said Laverty. He explained that the recycling facility doesn’t have the disposal costs because the materials are turned into something new that has a value.
“It is just as easy and it’s cheaper than disposal. You can continue to recycle no matter what the economy is doing, and businesses can save money,” said Laverty.
Typically, a business has tons of paper or cardboard to recycle, which yields a financial return. Laverty explained that every customer is different, with different amounts of recycling materials. If a business produces a large amount of paper or cardboard, QRS will provide an 8-yard recycling container (dumpster) onsite. In addition, there are training workshops for businesses that start a recycling program. Businesses can request on on-site assessment by a QRS associate for a closer evaluation of recycling potential.
Currently, QRS and the city are brainstorming ideas to make recycling more attractive for residents who participate in curbside pick-up.
Recycling is also economically beneficial for organizations such as Jefferson County Public Schools, the New Albany Floyd County Consolidated School Corporation and IUS, as QRS handles all of their recycling needs. In fact, QRS handles recycled material from the entire Metro Louisville area.
“We are proud that we are located in New Albany. We are recycling all of Louisville, Southern Indiana and the Kentuckiana area,” said Laverty.
Business at QRS is up, with 11,000 tons of recycling material going through the facility each month, which is an increase from the 9,000 tons reported in 2011. While more than 1,000 residents deliver recyclable materials each month, Laverty added that the curbside pickup brings in the most material.
Recycling is just the smart way to deal with waste from the products we use each day.
“It keeps everything out of the landfill. Landfills are only available for so long, and then they fill up. We have to find ways to decrease what we send to the landfill,” said Laverty.