Alabama

Recycling in Montgomery is coming back— again!

Recycling is important— no, it’s beyond important. The acknowledgment that Americans should be recycling any and all renewable materials, and that we should be less wasteful in our consumption is so common, so well-established, so obvious, as to be almost passé. And I’m so glad that the City of Montgomery is, once again, reviving our recycling program.

I’ve been following this issue for some time, beginning in 2010 when I was carrying my family’s recyclables to Mount Scrap after the City had ended curbside recycling. Then five years ago, in June 2013, the City announced that a company called IREP (Infinitus Renewable Energy Park) would be building a facility that would get our recycling program moving again. Though it had promise, that arrangement didn’t work out as well as we’d all hoped: after winning an award in August 2015, the operation closed up shop two months later. In 2016, the City kept up its efforts by taking over the IREP facility, and that transfer of ownership took a step forward when IREP went bankrupt that summer.

Now, in mid-2018, after Mayor Todd Strange called recycling a “priority” last December, this good news came last month:

RePower South, a group currently developing a $50 million recycling and recovery facility in South Carolina, is investing $12 million to get the city back into recycling in a previously used facility. The facility will be called the City of Montgomery Recycling and Recovery Facility and will be housed in the former Infinitus Renewable Energy Park facility.

According to the mission statement on its website:

RePower South’s vision is to live in a world where a zero waste philosophy and environmental sustainability are not abstract ideals, but practical ways of living. [ . . . ] RePower South captures and recycles 90% or greater of all of a community’s recyclable materials [which can] transform communities by dramatically reducing waste that ends up in landfills, dramatically improving local air quality and reducing local carbon footprint.

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