Garbage pickup, curbside recycling, and clean green pickup will be a day late all week, with Friday's pickup occurring on Saturday due to the Memorial Day holiday. Please have your carts out at point of collection by 6 a.m. on your collection day. See more information regarding city closures.
Kristine Major

Recycling Study Takes to the Streets

Kristine Major, Solid Waste Education Coordinator, 509.625.6521


Wednesday, May 27, 2020 at 3 p.m.

Recycling Study Takes to the Streets

Updated: 05/28/2020

Armed with smart phones and clipboards, “cart taggers” will hit the streets this summer to study recycling behaviors on select City and County routes. This is part of a cart tagging program called, “Feet on the Street.” The City of Spokane is partnering with Spokane County to help better educate residents and keep recycling affordable.

Small teams of cart taggers will be out on select routes beginning in June looking at carts and leaving behind an educational tag to help inform residents on what does and does not belong in the blue cart. Routes will be studied and tagged four consecutive times and data will be collected to see if the messaging is working. In the City, that means about 17,000 households could receive the personalized recycling feedback.

The cart tagging program is just one activity the City of Spokane and Spokane County are doing to reduce contamination in curbside recycling this year. Utility bill inserts, direct mailings, informative videos and social media messaging are also being used in this outreach campaign. The study is funded by The Recycling Partnership, a national non-profit working to improve recycling in the United States. Spokane is the first community in the Pacific Northwest to receive funding from TRP for cart tagging. Similar projects conducted in Akron, Atlanta, and Baltimore have all shown a significant decrease in recycling contamination collected at curbside when tagging carts supplements traditional forms of outreach.

The study will conclude in September and data will be released in early November. It is the goal of the City’s Solid Waste Department to reduce recycling contamination from 13% to 5% by 2021. If we all work together, we can meet that goal!

For more information about this program, see FAQs.

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