About 200 tons of waste per day arrives at the Northeast Minneapolis facility of Eureka Recycling to be sorted into 17 different products that are then resold. It processes roughly 50,000 tons of material each year.
Less than 2 percent of what arrives is discarded, either because it isn’t recyclable or there isn’t a market for it. That includes categories of difficult-to-recycle materials, like polystyrene (no. 6 plastic) and polyvinyl chloride (no. 3 plastic, also known as PVC), as well as specific products like Capri Sun juice packets, a “multi-material” that contains several types of plastic plus aluminum.
Minneapolis made the switch from a multi-sort recycling scheme to single-sort beginning in 2012 and took the program citywide in the spring of 2013. In 2014, the amount of recyclables was up by about 429 tons per month over the previous year, said David Herberholz, director of Solid Waste and Recycling. That translates to an increase of about 105 pounds per household per year. (Source: Southwest Journal)