Co-CollectionCombining Routes to Save Money and Speed Collection
With co-collection, a city or town combines multiple routes into one.
For example, instead of sending one truck to pick up the trash and another to pick up the recycling, a city can just send one truck to pick up both at the same time. Cities can also use co-collection to combine trash and food waste routes, as well as other materials.
This can save time, money, and wear and tear on equipment. It’s also more convenient for residents. Our name for co-collection is OneRoute®.
How Co-Collection Works
Co-collection can be used to combine trash and recycling routes, or trash and organics (food waste) routes. It works in cities with automated or manual collection. In addition, it can integrate seamlessly with pay-as-you-throw programs. Here’s basically how it works:
- The City requires residents to use official bags for recycling, trash, and organics (if organics is part of the program). Each material type has its own designated bag type, easily identifiable by the color and the printing on the bag.
- On collection days, residents place all bags at the curb, either in a single cart or by themselves.
- When collection workers come, they pick up all the bags and place them in the same truck.
- When the trucks unload, all of the bags are separated. Trash goes to the landfill, recyclables go to the materials recovery facility (MRF), and organics go to the composting facility (if applicable).
Benefits of Co-Collection
- Reduces fleet costs
- Reduces cart costs in cities with automated collection (only one cart is needed, not multiple)
- Makes routes more efficient
- Reduces burden on city staff
- Is more convenient for residents
Co-collection is used in a number of jurisdictions around the country. However, it’s not feasible everywhere. To work, the following elements must be present:
- Tipping location where the bags can be dumped and separated for processing
- MRF that can process bagged recyclables
- Composting facility that can handle organics in BPI-certified compostable plastic bags (if organics are a part of the co-collection program)
It’s also important to note that co-collection increases tipping and processing costs. However, those increases are more than offset by the reduction in collection costs.
What WasteZero Does
WasteZero offers the following services and supplies for OneRoute®co-collection:
- Feasibility and ROI Analysis
- Program Design
- Bag Distribution
- Resident Communications, Education, and Customer Service