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Recycling Updates

Recycling Updates is your source for up-to-date information on all that is new in recycling. Stay informed about recycling opportunities and resources, including grants, professional development, policy news and more. New updates and opportunities are posted as they become available. Recycling Updates is also an email subscription service, with emails sent about once per month.

DNR news releases

DNR's Waste and Materials Management Program puts out news releases dealing with recycling in Wisconsin. These are free and available for use in your newsletter, flier or other outreach materials.


Recycling Excellence Awards 2015 nomination period starts in June

From June 1 to Aug. 15, the Wisconsin DNR will be accepting 2015 nominations for its annual Recycling Excellence Awards. The award program celebrates the outstanding recycling efforts of both large and small communities and organizations throughout the state. Any recycling responsible unit or organization can nominate itself or submit a nomination on another program’s behalf.

More information on the Recycling Excellence Awards can be found by searching “recycling excellence awards” on the DNR website or by contacting Angela Carey by email or at 608-266-6965.

Policy news

Newspaper recycling fee repealed

2015 Wisconsin Act 7 took effect April 10. Act 7 repeals the general requirement that newspapers contain a target amount of recycled paper (s. 287.31 Wis. Stats.) and the corresponding fee for newspaper publishers who fail to meet the target (NR 546, Wis. Adm. Code).

Recycling news

Waukesha County distributes nearly $1.5 million to municipalities for recycling

Waukesha County is sending nearly $1.5 million to over two dozen municipality partners in the county recycling program to help offset residential recycling collection costs. Since 2001, participating municipalities have received more than $13.6 million, and Waukesha County has experienced a 17 percent decline in per capita solid waste generated in the past 10 years.

Community spotlight

Recycling Updates Community Spotlight

The Community Spotlight recognizes innovative and exciting recycling and waste reduction efforts by local and tribal governments, businesses and other groups in Wisconsin.

Spotlight on: Lake Delton’s recycling ordinance update

Lakeside bluffs near Lake Delton

The Wisconsin Dells-Lake Delton vacation area attracts 1.5 million visitors each year, and all of these temporary residents can pose special challenges for the local recycling program. However, a recent move toward contracting a single hauler is boosting compliance and reducing costs for the village of Lake Delton.

In years past, Lake Delton required residents to contract recycling and garbage haulers on their own. This led to confusion and inconsistent reporting of recycling tonnage, with five different haulers contracted within one small community. As Assistant Zoning Administrator Chris Narveson explains, there was “no way to be sure who was using recycling and garbage pickup and who was not” or who was alternatively dumping their own waste in others’ privately owned bins.

In early 2014, the DNR found that the village had not reported adequate recycling collection amounts and reminded the village that it could face a ban from Wisconsin landfills and thus have to haul its garbage out of state.

In less than one month, the village drafted a corrective action plan. The village contacted area haulers and worked ¬to make sure tonnage reports arrived on time and in full. The Village Board then rewrote its recycling and garbage ordinance to allow for a single hauler contract and included apartment buildings and condominiums in the hauler contract. As of Feb. 1, 2015, the village contracted Lenorud Services Inc. as the sole authorized garbage hauler for single-family residences and buildings containing up to four residential units.

Narveson notes that the single hauler contract is likely to reduce individual costs. In an interview with Capital Newspapers, he explained, “Because one hauler can go through the village and pick up all the garbage and recycling it is far easier for the vendor than having some customers here and the neighbors using another hauler.” A single hauler system, he says, will be more efficient and less costly overall. “We can get a lower bulk price and a unified package will end the inconsistencies.”

For its work, the village of Lake Delton was recognized with a 2014 DNR Excellence in Wisconsin Recycling award in the Projects and Initiatives category.


DNR poster helps residents sort home composting

A new poster from the Wisconsin DNR gives residents a quick and easy way to check what can and cannot be composted in most home compost piles.

Carton recycling fliers can be shared by hand or social media

The Carton Council of North American has developed free outreach materials to help spread information about carton recycling.

E-book busts recycling myths for material recovery facilities

The Recycling Partnership has collected common myths and misconceptions about recycling from a series of expert webinars. Those myths are “busted” with a new e-book, filled with downloadable digital cards to share with the community.

Curbside collection fact sheet now online

The UW-Extension Solid & Hazardous Waste Education Center has produced a fact sheet resource on the various available options for curbside collection of recyclable materials.

Brush collection service provider directory updated

In time for spring yard projects and storm cleanup, the UW-Extension Solid & Hazardous Waste Education Center has updated its list of contractors who provide mobile grinding, screening and crushing services in Wisconsin.


Upcoming recycling webinars, workshops and conferences

Event: Let’s WRAP (Wrap Recycling Action Program): Best Practices to Boost Plastic Film Recycling in Your Community
Date & time: July 16, 12 to 1:30 p.m.
Location: Online
Sponsors: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Registration: Register online [exit DNR]

Event: What Really Goes in that Bale? An Overview of the 2015 National Mixed Rigid Bale Composition Study
Date & time: Aug. 11, 12 to 1 p.m.
Location: Online
Sponsors: The Association of Postconsumer Plastic Recyclers
Registration: Register online [exit DNR]

Event: APR Resources to Support Domestic Plastic Recycling Markets
Date & time: Sept. 15, 12 to 1 p.m.
Location: Online
Sponsors: The Association of Postconsumer Plastic Recyclers
Registration: Register online [exit DNR]

Event: Keep Your Caps On! A 2015 Update
Date & time: Oct. 27, 12 to 1 p.m.
Location: Online
Sponsors: The Association of Postconsumer Plastic Recyclers
Registration: Register online [exit DNR]

Last revised: Friday July 03 2015