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City sees payoff of recycling efforts, saves over half of trash from landfill

Posted at 2:24 PM, Aug 20, 2018

Do you ever wonder what impact putting your recyclables in the right bin can actually have? For one Colorado city, it’s been huge.

At prAna, an activewear business located in Boulder, Colorado, Drew Romano’s biggest concerns are his customers and Mother Nature. Recycling is front and center.

“Hey, we're not just throwing your stuff in the landfill; it's actually being recycled,” says Romano about the company.

Most of prAna‘s shipping supplies are recyclable. As for the plastics bags that hard to recycle, prAna partnered with a company to make sure they don't end up in the landfill.

“We wanted to make sure that we can strive to be as zero waste as possible,” says Ramano.

It's part of the city’s Universal Zero Waste Ordinance, which requires businesses to recycle and compost.  

Environmental manager Kara Mertz, who works for the City of Boulder, says in just one year, the effort is paying off. The city is now saving more than half of its trash from going to the landfill.

Mertz says they used this video to show residents how to recycle. Then, they made it easy for residents to do it, by placing bins with clear and identical signage across the city.

“I think making it easy and accessible to everyone is really the key,” says Mertz.

Mertz says it's something we can all do, no matter where we live.

“We do believe that over time people will get more and more used to it,” Mertz says. “It'll become second nature, and then all of that material, once it's sorted properly, can be put in the correct bins.”