Sunday, April 06, 2008

Hawaii Recycling Program Grows; Doing It The Right Way

Curbside recycling will be extended to 12 communities islandwide by May 2010.

Residents in East Honolulu, Kailua and the North Shore will be the next to participate in the plan to redirect reusable waste products from island landfills. The recycling program that began with 20,000 households in Hawaii Kai and Mililani last year will be extended to 40,000 more homes in November.

Curbside recycling was mandated by Oahu voters in a charter amendment approved in November 2006. Earlier that year the City Council gave the mayor two years to come up with a full recycling plan.

The mayor announced other environmental initiatives:

» The city will buy the HPOWER waste-to-energy plant for $43.8 million, a decision that requires City Council approval. The plant burns more than 600,000 tons of trash each year, producing electricity to power 45,000 homes. It is owned by Bank of America and Ford Credit and operated by Covanta Energy.

» Public recycling receptacles will be placed in city facilities and the largest parks this year and eventually in more than 70 parks islandwide.

Richard Poirier, chairman of the Mililani/Waipio/Melemanu Neighborhood Board, said he has not heard any major complaints about curbside recycling implemented in October. "Some people don't like having the extra container because they don't have space to store them. Some people just won't recycle. It takes a conscious effort by each household.

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