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KC Recycles begins weekly collection Nov. 1

Recycling will be even easier for Kansas City, Mo., residents beginning Nov. 1, when the City of Kansas City, Mo., kicks off weekly curbside collection of recyclables.

Kansas City Mayor Kay Barnes; City Councilman Jim Rowland, 4th District; and City Manager Wayne A. Cauthen announced details of the weekly KC Recycles program at a news conference at 3:30 p.m. Monday in the mayor’s office.

“Providing weekly curbside recycling in Kansas City is a substantial step forward in educating our citizens about the products they purchase as well as the trash they create. Kansas City is moving toward including the environment in daily decisions on a personal level and a municipal level,” Rowland said.

The City’s curbside recycling program has provided biweekly collection since implementation was phased in across the city beginning in March 2004. On Sept.15, the City Council approved an ordinance sponsored by Rowland providing for weekly recycling collection.

By making recycling even more convenient than before, the City hopes to increase the amount of recyclables collected and further reduce landfill costs.

“With less trash to collect, the costs to collect and dispose of residential trash are dramatically reduced. These reductions will continue as residents are able to conveniently recycle more materials with weekly collection,” Cauthen said.

A July telephone survey conducted by the ETC Institute of 411 residents in the city’s urban core found that about 60 percent of residents said they would be likely or very likely to recycle more if the service was offered weekly.

“Recycling also conserves resources and extends the life of local landfills. With energy costs going up, conserving resources makes sense,” Barnes said. “Every aluminum can recycled saves six ounces of gasoline. More than 500,000 gallons of gasoline have been saved by KC Recycles from aluminum recycling alone,” Barnes said. “Moving to a weekly collection throughout the city will help sustain the program and contribute to our shared goal to become a clean city.”

Recycling is voluntary, so eligible households can set their recyclables out every week or on an as-needed basis. Eligible households are single-family residences and apartment buildings of six or fewer units. Residents do not need to call or sign up for the service; the blue KC Recycles bin signals the recycling truck to stop. Free recycling bins were provided to residents as the program was implemented.

The City accepts two trash bags with no tags each week. Each additional bag requires a trash tag that can be purchased for $1 at participating Westlake Ace Hardware and Price Chopper stores. By recycling, citizens will reduce the amount of trash they generate and save money by buying fewer trash bags.

Recyclables will continue to be collected on the same day that trash is collected. Trash and recyclables must be placed at the curb by 7 a.m. on the collection day.

Because the start date for weekly recycling collection is a Tuesday, recycling collection Oct. 31 will occur on the current biweekly schedule. All residences with Monday trash collection will receive Monday recycling collection every week beginning Nov. 7.

To educate citizens about the implementation of weekly recycling collection, City staff is meeting with neighborhood organizations, distributing informational materials, working with sponsors Westlake Ace Hardware and Price Chopper on promotional efforts, developing a television public service announcement and conducting a radio promotion campaign. The radio promotion campaign includes radio advertisements and a prize patrol that awards residents that recycle with gift certificates, movie passes and other prizes.

KC Recycles has recycled 12,000 tons (24 million pounds) of material in 2005, for a total of 19,000 tons since March 2004. Recycling has increased from about 1,300 tons per month earlier this year to an average of 1,495 tons per month for August and September.

For more information about KC Recycles, call Dee Ann Gregory, KC Recycles coordinator, (816) 513-3454, or visit

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