Single-family homes in unincorporated Orange County will soon transition to an automated garbage and recycling collection system – a move endorsed and supported by Orange County’s Sustainability Advisory Board.
Nearly 205,000 Orange County residents will receive two new 95-gallon garbage and recycling roll carts between October and December for the new Automated Curbside Collection Program that begins on Jan. 1, 2016.
There are many benefits to the program, including increased convenience for residents due to fewer trips to the curb and cleaner communities because the roll carts create neater, litter-free neighborhoods.
“Studies show that automated collection programs increase recycling rates up to 35 percent,” said Orange County’s Solid Waste Manager Jim Becker. “Long term, the compressed natural gas requirement for collection vehicles means that the vehicles will be quieter and will reduce pollution.”
Currently there are four weekly collections – two for garbage, one for recycling and one for yard waste. With the new program in 2016, garbage will only be collected once a week reducing the total number of collections to three weekly. As a result, there will be a 15 percent reduction in the cost to residents.
To showcase the new roll carts and educate the public about the new program, Orange County District 6 Commissioner Victoria P. Siplin joined community leaders and several representatives from area neighborhood associations for a tour of Rehrig Pacific Co.’s Orange County manufacturing facility.
Rehrig is producing 200,000 of the 400,000 roll carts to support the initiative. The carts are made of highly durable recyclable plastic with barcode technology.
“We're making an average of about 1,000 roll carts per day,” said Andres Gutierrez, Rehrig Pacific’s local plant manager.
Most all of the roll carts will be made in their Orange County facility, which has 35 employees. The company has been a long-time partner with the County and manufactured the first recycling bins in 1990.
“This local manufacturer not only benefits District 6, but all of Orange County citizens, who are employed by Rehrig and are taxpayers,” Commissioner Siplin said. “The tour was very informative and it was good to get a behind-the-scenes look of this endeavor.”
Community leaders praised the technology and sustainability of the products.
“The way we currently dispose of our garbage has greatly improved,” said 78-year-old Barbara Anderson, a resident of Orlo Vista. “It’s my hope that with this new program residents will be prone to recycle more – so I see the change in a positive light.”
Orange County opted to have the carts manufactured from black material because of the ability of manufacturers to use 30 to 50 percent more recycled content to make the roll carts.
Orange County's Sustainability Plan, "Our Home for Life," is the result of the Mayor's Sustainability Initiative, which began in 2013 as an effort to plan for future population growth in a way that enhances the quality of life for current and future generations. The plan outlines specific incremental and transformative changes for the County through 2040, leading towards a more prosperous, healthy, livable, and connected community.
To learn more about the County’s new Automated Curbside Collection Program, visit www.ocfl.net/GreenClean2016. Residents may also call the Solid Waste Hotline at 407-836-6601 or email Solid.Waste@ocfl.net.