Fruita nearly doubles use of recycling service

Officials with the city of Fruita were hoping to increase the amount of trash they recycle each month by getting the message out about its recycling service, and it seems the community was listening.

The city’s diversion rate — or, the percentage of trash that isn’t headed for the landfill — has nearly doubled since the city promoted the recycling program in October.

The thought at the time was that many of Fruita’s residents perhaps did not know that their city trash service, by Waste Management, included the curbside service as part of their regular fees. It was the subject of a front page article in the Daily Sentinel.

Something must have clicked. In November, Fruita’s diversion rate jumped to 8.09 percent, from 4.77 in October, and in December the diversion rate went even higher to 9.47 percent.

“That’s what we were hoping to do,” said Fruita City Manager Clint Kinney.

Recyclables will be picked up on customers’ regular trash day, rather than the previous Friday-only schedule. The new recycling schedule will begin on the week of March 4.

“We can’t keep up with just the one day a week of recycling,” Kinney said. “We’ve had a great improvement the past couple of months, and we’ve got a long way to go, and now we’re making these changes so we can continue to improve it.”

People can still sign up and get their recycling bins by calling the city at 858-3663, or visiting http://www.fruita.org.

As Kinney said, the city has a way to go to match other regional diversion rates. The city of Grand Junction’s diversion rate for 2012 was 16.43 percent. They recycled more than 2,200 tons last year, according to information from Darren Starr, Grand Junction’s streets and solid waste manager.

The state of Colorado diverted 23.8 percent in 2011, which is not a surprise with cities like Boulder diverting as much as 46 percent, like they did in 2010.


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