The Rise of Purple Recycling Bins in the Waste Management Industry

In recent times, the rise of purple skip bins has reached a certain level, and with its immense popularity, its fallout seems impossible. However, its popularity is not only because of the color but there are many other factors too. Also, when you approach a skip bin hire have a look at them whether they are serving a great quality or not; or is it just the trend that they are following.

How And Why Purple Skip Bin Rose?

The state of Virginia has struggled with glass recycling for years, explains Scott MacDonald, recycling program manager, Prince William County Solid Waste Division. Prince William County, Virginia, is pulling glass from the single-stream array along with communities around the country and heading towards a drop-off network for a purple bin. MacDonald who has worked for 29 years in the recycling industry said that “It always seems like it shouldn’t be this hard, but for whatever reason it is”. Furthermore, he added, “It just seems like we need a reset for glass in Virginia.”

MacDonald says that the recycling of glass is a big challenge in Virginia; it is because the major closet glass processor is in North Carolina and the glass that is collected from the curbside programs is not that clear enough to use. It cannot be used to make new bottles. This is why Prince William has stopped requiring the haulers to collect glass, recently. However, to cover the loss the company is joining other jurisdictions in a pilot glass recycling program.

Charles Forbes, recycling, compliance and planning, Fairfax County Solid Waste Management Program, after attending a seminar on glass, was motivated to create the Purple Can Club, which he modeled after the purple bin glass recycling scheme of Kansas City, Missouri-based Ripple Glass.

A glass crushing and screening machine that is enough for producing 20 tons of glass per hour, Forbes purchased for the country. Also, he named it “Big Blue” – the beauty!. Moreover, he helped in painting the bins purple also, he worked with Alexandria and Arlington County, Virginia. In addition, he said, “large purple dumpsters and specialty signage in different languages intended to catch the public’s eye”.

Like every renowned businessman, he drafted a big plan and analyzed how much money is spent on disposing of glass at the landfill which is $69 per ton, also, he analyzed how much money is required to spend on construction and road projects, together. On this event, after analyzing the fact he stated that, “the pilot program will recycle landfill-bound post-consumer glass into aggregate for county construction projects”.

Forbes says, “we have all the pieces put together and here we are.” Also, “another reason we are standing where we are is everyone’s appetite for the project.”

Kansas City threw 150 million pounds of post-consumer glass away in 2009, including some 10 million bottles made by a local brewer. John McDonald, the founder of Boulevard Brewing, saw a need for glass recycling, but there was no nearby facility to process glass. McDonald’s developed Ripple Glass with community help, and now collects and processes glass in the Midwest.

Michelle Goth, Ripple Glass’s general manager said that “In Kansas City, we have a purple bin program that we collect glass from, but we work with other cities to help them set up their own programs and ship glass to Kansas City in bulk for processing”

“For America, it’s been modified,” Goth says. We aspire to make one of our purple bins open to all Kansas City residents within a five-minute drive. It’s not as easy as getting a curbside set, but ideally, you are running a part of an errand and it’s a natural stop.

“They have been very deliberate,” Goth says. “they have done a lot of testing. For what things, they looked at what colors were used. They learned purple had been previously unused. They were trying to find a color that would stand out. She adds, “people know the purple bin better than Ripple Glass”. They are going to say, “I’m taking my glass to the purple bin

In 2018, Ripple constructed a glass processing plant that processed about 40,000 tons of glass. To make fiberglass insulation and new glass bottles the glasses were used by the manufacturers, such as Owens Corning.

Alexandria and Arlington County have been supplied by Fairfax County with purple containers. In March, the county gathered and handled its first load of glass. Forbes wants the program to expand to represent all Northern Virginia municipalities and for people to know “that’s glass only when they see a purple can.”

At two recycling centers, Prince William County has set up purple bins. MacDonald says his long-term goal is to work with bottle maker Owens-Illinois Glass Company and to build collaborations to recycle post-consumer glass into new glass bottles with the more than 200 wineries in the area. In the end, MacDonald says; “We have a potential place for the glass to go”.

Therefore, this was the depicted story of how and why the rise of purple bin rose up in waste management, and how the purple bins made a huge difference for waste management in many areas!

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