Piles of snow at the curb and high winds can cause problems for curbside recycling. To help smooth the process over until the snow thaws, Emmet County Recycling staff offers three tips.
1) Get a free lid for green totes.
Lids are available to help contain materials inside the green totes. The tote lids are available for free, while supplies last, thanks to a grant from the Petoskey-Harbor Springs Area Community Foundation.
Customers can pick up a lid from either the Department of Public Works administrative offices in the Emmet County Building basement in downtown Petoskey from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 pm., or at the Pleasantview Road drop-off center near Harbor Springs from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays, and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays.
Some residents may have a green tote that has no lids available. In that case, the tote can be traded in for one that comes with a lid. Check with the recycling staff by calling (231) 348-0640 on which kind of tote you prefer to have for curbside recycling.
2) High winds? Hold off on recycling that week.
“Many residents believe they have to set their recyclables out every week. But really, it is better all around to just set out when needed and manageable,” said Kate Melby, the communications coordinator for Emmet County Recycling.
With the new 64-gallon rolling carts that are reserved for recycling paper, boxes and bags, residents now have up to 100 gallons of capacity at the curb. That extra space may allow houses to go two or three weeks before the cart and totes fill up.
If green totes for containers begin to overflow, residents are welcome to use additional crates, totes, buckets or boxes to set out extra materials. The only requirements are that cardboard is flattened and in pieces no larger than 2-by-2 feet, and that the additional crates not be larger or deeper than the green totes provided by the county recycling program. This helps prevent injuries for staff who collect the materials.
Another option is to drop off recyclables at one of the county’s 13 drop sites.
3) Set totes and carts along driveway, not on snow piles left by plows.
Totes and carts perched on piles of snow that are created by snow plows could be knocked over by additional snow plowing, making it very difficult for the recycling driver to collect the materials.
Instead, place the totes and carts in the end of the driveway. If it blocks the driveway’s path, try to shovel an area for the carts and totes in the snow on the side of the driveway. Emmet County Recycling staff recommend placing the recycling on the right side of the driveway (if you’re facing the road) because totes can be hidden from view from the drivers if they’re placed on the left.
For more information, call Emmet County Recycling at (231) 348-0640 or visit EmmetRecycling.org.