Moorhead City Leaders Approve New Recycling Plan

Moorhead city leaders approve a plan to single stream recycle.

The city approved the initial budget for $1.5 million and also to apply for a $250,000 grant from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.

Recycling in Moorhead brings in around 485 tons per year.

They hope the new plan encourages people to recycle.

Right now people are separating all different types of recycling material.

The City of Moorhead wants you to be able to group it all together into one container.

“The big idea is to make it easier, what you’re going to have is a 95 gallon tote just like your garbage container and you can put all your recyclables in that container,” says Steve Moore, Moorhead Public Works Director.

West Fargo is the only major city in the Red River Valley that uses single stream recycling.

They made the switch in April 2015.

“We saw a huge increase, a big spike and then it’s kind of leveled off and everybody’s gotten used to it but we went from maybe less than 10 percent participation to I would say nearly 90% recycling participation,” says Tom Clark, West Fargo Sanitation.

One other advantage of the plan is apartments will be able to participate.

“Once we go to single stream, our hope is to replace some of those brown dumpsters that now take trash with blue ones that now take recycling,” Moore says.

One stream recycling does require the material to be sorted at a facility, but West Fargo says it’s a fair trade.

“That’s something that they decided was worth the effort to get the participation,” Clark explains.

It makes things easier for you.

“You don’t have to separate out your plastics and your cans and your cardboard will all go in one container. And then we’ll tip it just like your garbage container,” Moore says.

It’s a simple change, that can make a big difference.

“We don’t want to wait any longer to go to single stream because really our recycling has been kind of flatline for the last few years,” explains Moore.

People will see a $1 to $2 increase in their collection fee.

The plan will be in action in July 2017.