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An example of an outstanding recycle program that works!

Updated on July 6, 2011

What do you see in this image?

This is not a simple colorful recycling bins! The township of Upper Dublin in Pennsylvania has thousands of homes using multi-colored garbage bins!
This is not a simple colorful recycling bins! The township of Upper Dublin in Pennsylvania has thousands of homes using multi-colored garbage bins!

What's the big deal?

Let me begin by saying that recycling does not look this pretty in my home town in New Jersey! Back there we have 3 pickup days: 2 days for garbage and one for recycling. It's a constant hassle trying to remember which day is which and which bin has garbage or recycle!

Not here! As you can see, both the brown garbage bin and the blue recycle bin are out on the street at the same day. There's no confusion as to which garbage bin is which. The bin design also helps load the garbage in the garbage truck a lot easier. Because there are thousands of identical garbage and recycle bins being used by every single home in this town.

These bins are everywhere

I was driving around for miles and every single house has these bins. This must be a powerful social force to encourage recycling!
I was driving around for miles and every single house has these bins. This must be a powerful social force to encourage recycling!
A closeup of the bins
A closeup of the bins

A successful example of recycling

There are 3 powerful forces at play here that encourage recycling:

  • It is easy. As simple as load the brown bin with trash and blue bin with recyclables.
  • Instructions are provided. The blue bin describes what can be put inside (recyclables, plastics #1 and 2, etc)
  • Everyone is using them. And I mean every single house for miles and miles. I've seen 2 examples of other trash bins used for yard waste at 2 houses and I drove for almost 5 miles around town looking in awe at this miracle of recycling!
This really impressed me. My town, and I bet a lot of towns in America can learn a lot from this example. It may not be perfect, but it really works. Imagine growing up in an environmentally - conscious town like this? This will produce a long lasting positive effect on kids!

Get paid for easy recycling?

Easy to follow instructions which tell you exactly what to put in the recycling bin!
Easy to follow instructions which tell you exactly what to put in the recycling bin!
Apparently the company called recycle bank makes money on this. Or do people make the money? I'm not sure!
Apparently the company called recycle bank makes money on this. Or do people make the money? I'm not sure!
Every recycle bin is labeled and scanned when it is loaded. Truly one man's junk is another man's treasure!
Every recycle bin is labeled and scanned when it is loaded. Truly one man's junk is another man's treasure!

Getting paid for recycling is impressive

As a kid, I used to collect glass bottles and submit them for recycling for cash. This funded some of my petty purchases and was even fun! Finding a bunch of beer bottles was like discovering a treasure pile. Because recycling paid.

I have since then grown up and I doubt I would go out looking for glass bottles again, unless it is a part of some environmental cleanup program. 

Seeing that the company actually pays for clean, useful recyclables made me re-live those childhood treasure hunting days. I think it's really great. 

Please pass the word and help your town get a good recycling program! Keep treasure out of landfills!

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