recycling

The state of Ohio has reached a $16.5 million partial settlement in its lawsuit against the operators of an illegal East Cleveland dump — but collecting that money will be a difficult task.

In Cleveland, most of the recycling residents put at the curb is not being recycled. City leaders says it’s a problem many cities are dealing with because of a changing market and contaminated items.

Cleveland has hired a consultant to help them figure out a new path forward. It will likely involve a drastic reduction in the program.

It should come as no surprise that the holiday season produces more trash than usual. In fact, according to research from Stanford University, Americans throw away 25% more during the Thanksgiving to New Year's holiday period than any other time of year.

In this April 16, 2018 file photo, Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, speaks during a news conference at a Kroger supermarket as the company announces new associate benefits attributed to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, in Cincinnati.
John Minchillo / Associated Press

Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) says as much as one-third of materials in recycling bins are going into landfills.

Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, left, and Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, speak to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018.
J. Scott Applewhite / AP

The impeachment inquiry is drawing a big line between Republicans and Democrats, but lawmakers are still working together on some legislation.

Greene County officials are continuing to contend with massive quantities of organic debris left behind by an EF3 tornado that touched down in the area on Memorial Day.

Nearly 150,000 cubic yards of debris has been removed from Greene County properties since the storm hit -- that's enough to fill about five Olympic-sized swimming pools.

Greene County Administrator Brandon Huddleson says the debris is being stored at two sites: the county’s environmental services center and Cemex Reserve, a public park that contains wetland areas.

The U.S. used to send a lot of its plastic waste to China to get recycled. But last year, China put the kibosh on imports of the world's waste. The policy, called National Sword, freaked out people in the U.S. — a huge market for plastic waste had just dried up.

Where was it all going to go now?

Montgomery County Aims To Recycle Tornado Debris

Jun 18, 2019

Cleanup continues in many neighborhoods hard hit by a series of tornadoes on Memorial Day.  Montgomery County officials are striving to recycle as much of the debris as possible rather than send it directly to landfills.

Most yard waste and untreated scrap wood can be turned into mulch when brought to the Montgomery County Solid Waste Transfer and Recycling Facility in Moraine where it is ground up on-site and delivered to local companies to sell as mulch.

Reducing Food Waste In Franklin County

May 22, 2019
pshutterbug / Flickr

According to the USDA, the U.S. wastes 30 to 40 percent of its food supply each year. And in Franklin County, that amounted to 152,000 tons of food waste. 

The Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio is looking to cut that number in half by 2030

One of their plans is to encourage ‘rightsizing’ portions in employee training at local restaurants. This would reduce waste from restaurants that consistently overserve.  

Today on All Sides, we’re discussing how we can meet SWACO’s goal and why it's important to reduce food waste.

A view from the top of the SWACO landfill.
Thomas Bradley / WOSU

Last year, 152,000 tons of food waste was sent to the landfill in Central Ohio. The Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio (SWACO) is announcing an action plan to cut that number in half by 2030.

Community representatives ceremonially toss recycleales into bins that will be distributed to their residents.
Olivia Miltner / WOSU

Five Central Ohio communities will be handing out 38,000 new recycling bins to their residents, free of cost, over the next month.

Sam Hendren / WOSU

Some Central Ohio recycling companies blame China’s ban on imported plastic waste for rising costs and lower revenues.

Plastic garbage from Trader Joe's and an AARP card are peeking out of hillocks of plastic trash piling up in Indonesia.

It's a sign of a new global quandary: What should wealthy countries do with their plastic waste now that China no longer is buying it?

For years, America sold millions of tons of used yogurt cups, juice containers, shampoo bottles and other kinds of plastic trash to China to be recycled into new products.

And it wasn't just the U.S. Some 70 percent of the world's plastic waste went to China – about 7 million tons a year.

Nick Evans / WOSU

It’s been six years since Columbus started offering free curb-side recycling. The program proved popular, but it’s only available to people who live in buildings with four or fewer units. That’s a big problem for student housing near The Ohio State University, a school that prides itself on zero waste.

Hilltop activist Lisa Boggs.
Nick Evans

Columbus officials say dirty streets are providing cover for rising crime, and are launching a new initiative to combat illegal dumping.

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