At the Birmingham City Council Meeting today, Mayor Woodfin announced that curbside recycling will be temporarily suspended after the Wednesday, April 8th citywide pickup.
Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the mayor described challenges the city’s Public Works Department now face, including workers having to work in close proximity to each other during a pandemic and a significant increase in the volume of trash.
Staying at Home Produces More Trash
Regarding waste collection, since the beginning of the lockdown, Public Works has seen a significant increase in the volume of materials that is put out by residents to be collected. Staying at home has resulted in more household waste.
In order to reduce the strain on Public Work workers the mayor has temporarily suspended curbside recycling pickup on Wednesday and moved to a 4 days a week, 10 hours a day, work schedule.
“In terms of cutting back to ease the burden of our city workers this is the easiest thing to do,” stated City Councilor Darrell O’Quinn. “This is not a statistic anyone is proud of, but we don’t have widespread participation in curbside recycling in the city of Birmingham.“
According to O’Quinn, Birmingham Recycling and Recovery, the business that takes Birmingham’s recyclables estimate recycling participation in the city is less than 1%.
City Haul Continues
City Haul, a new pilot curbside recycling program that was launched on April 1 will continue as planned. Here are the neighborhoods that are part of the project (the service is offered along routes. In most cases it serves most of the neighborhoods – not the entire neighborhood).
The program is scheduled to last six months. About 2800 96-gallon refuse bins were distributed last week to households. Trash and recycling pickup service within the boundaries are now both once a week.
Where Can You Send Your Recyclables?
So, where can you recycle after April 8th?
Birmingham Recycling and Recovery at 9 41st Street South in Avondale already takes Birmingham’s recyclables. That means whatever you put out at the curbside today, you can drop off at the center. The items?
What’s the Future of Recycling?
This is another big blow for recycling in Birmingham. The future most likely depends on the success of the new City Haul program.