Arlington Awarded $73,000 NCTCOG Grant for New Outreach Campaign to Increase Recycling, Reduce Recycling Stream Contamination
By Susan Schrock, Office of Communication
Posted on August 31, 2022, August 31, 2022

Man holding a sign with a recycling symbol and another sign with a question mark

The City of Arlington recently received a $73,000 grant for a new print and digital outreach campaign designed to reduce recycling contamination and increase residents’ awareness of all available recycling options.

This grant, prepared in cooperation with the North Central Texas Council of Governments though funding from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, will allow the City of Arlington to educate residents about what materials can and cannot be recycled in new, targeted ways beyond its Garbage and Recycling website and social media platforms. Arlington is launching this effort in response to a 2021 survey that indicated residents were interested in recycling but that the City needed to build community trust in the recycling program through further education and outreach.

Goals include:

  • Reduce the City’s recycling contamination rate, which at nearly 40% is currently higher than the regional average of 26%. An audit will be held at the end of the one-year campaign to measure contamination in the recycling stream. Contamination includes unclean items or non-recyclable items, such as garden hoses, electronics, clothing, batteries, styrofoam and food waste.
  • Increase the amount of recycling material received at the City’s six Library recycling drop-off locations by 10%. Currently, the City collects an average 157 tons of materials from those locations per year. These locations, which are ideal for residents who live in multifamily properties without curbside recycling, accept paper and cardboard, aluminum and metal, cartons, plastic and glass. Click here for more details. The City will update signage about acceptable materials at the recycling drop-offs to include English, Spanish and Vietnamese. Arlington will also conduct targeted recycling educational outreach within multifamily complexes.
  • Launch Waste Wizard, a searchable app that would provide residents with real-time specific instructions on how to recycle or dispose of material within the city.
  • Launch The Collection Calendar, an app that would communicate recycling service schedule changes, provides service updates and notifications and conduct marketing campaigns to reinforce messaging about good recycling habits.
  • Launch a mobile app that would allow Arlington residents to access all recycling information anywhere at any time.
  • Create updated decals for recycling carts as well as printed education materials, including postcards and utility bill inserts, in English, Spanish and Vietnamese.

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