Baton Rouge looks to get rid of curbside glass recycling
BATON ROUGE - For all you loyal recyclers out there, your glass jars and wine bottles will no longer be needed after the city is doing away with recycling glass in East Baton Rouge parish.
Glass along with other recycled items are taken to be recycled at the Progressive Waste Solutions site to be recycled, but for glass there's no equipment to properly recycle it and manufactures won't buy it.
City officials said they had to make a decision to either pay close $800,000 more a year to allow them to purchase equipment to recycle the glass properly or to do away with it.
The city said this is the best decision for taxpayers.
"When we first learned that Progressive didn't want to recycle glass we were definitely surprised," said Williams Daniel, East Baton Rouge Chief of Administrator Officer. "But when we started looking around we see that it's kind of a national phenomena that glass as a recycling commodity is just no longer valuable to the recycler."
Progressive Waste Solutions managers said recycled glass can be highly contaminated and can cause companies like them have to spit out even more money to lower those contamination rates.
"Contamination can be a lot of things," said Progressive Waste Solutions Division Manager David Quaife. "It can be like shredded paper still in it... the process doesn't separate them or it could be shredded aluminum."
Company officials also said that sorting through glass is needed when recycling it but can be dangerous for their employees. They said new equipment is needed to properly recycle glass and allow manufacturers to use.
"It's very costly to get it as clean as they want it," said Quaife.
Progressive will stop picking up curbside glass on Nov. 1. City leaders are working on alternatives ways to allow people to recycle their glass items.