End of Year School Recycling

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SOCRRA E-News Update | May 2018

A lot can accumulate in the classroom and in lockers over the year! With a little bit of planning, you can minimize the amount of waste sent to the landfill from your year end clean out.

Remember the 3 R’s!

Reduce ‐ Take note of what you are throwing away. Is it the same half‐used package of index cards that you threw away last year? Plan to use up all of the last of your supplies before the end of the year. And if you do end up with an excess of something, take note to reduce the amount of that item you get for next year.

Reuse ‐ Many supplies including dry erase markers, partially used note‐ books, and even opened glue and paint (with lids tightly secured), will be good to use after a few months of storage, so don’t trash those extra items. Do your best to store and save for use again next year.

Recycle ‐ Avoid a last minute rush that is more likely to result in mixing trash with recyclables. Use all your available recycling containers, and add extra temporary containers to be able to capture all the recyclables.

MRF Grand Opening

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SOCRRA E-News Update | May 2018

While the updated recycling facility started operation in January, SOCRRA celebrated its official Grand Opening for city officials and media on April 19th. The updated facility can now process mixed recyclables and double the amount of material than the old facility. City officials and media were treated to a demonstration of a recycling truck unloading recyclables, and a tour of the new facility.

Compost is Available!

It’s finally starting to feel like spring and that means SOCRRA compost is available. Check with your City’s DPW to see if compost is available in their yard. Or visit SOCRRA.org to learn more about how you can pick‐up compost at SOCRRA’s Compost Facility in Rochester Hills.

SOCRRA Reopens Drop-off Recycling Services

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SOCRRA E-News Update | February 2018

We are pleased to announce the reopening of our self-service, drop-off center! During construction of SOCRRA’s new materials recovery facility, we temporarily closed our popular, free drop-off center to the public.

MON – FRI: 9 am to 5 pm

SAT: 7 am to 1 pm

995 Coolidge Hwy Troy, MI 48084

What to Recycle:

  • Mixed Recycling: No more separation of recyclables at our drop off center! Paper, flattened cardboard, plastic bottles, jugs and containers, glass and metal containers can now be recycled together!

  • Electronics

  • Paint & Chemicals

  • Plastic Bags, Wrap & Styrofoam

  • VHS Tapes, Cassettes, CDs, Clothes, Shoes, Hard Cover Books, see a full list

  • Self-service Shredder: destroy and recycle confidential documents during hours of operation

Plastic Bags & Styrofoam FAQ:

Why can’t I recycle plastic bags or Styrofoam in my residential cart?
Answer: Plastic bags and wrap can become tangled in recycling equipment and cause problems for recycling.

Styrofoam can be recycled only at our drop-off center in designated containers. No peanuts, please.

SOCRRA's Holiday Recycling Guide

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SOCRRA E-News Update | December 2017

The holiday season is upon us! Here at SOCRRA, it is a season where recyclers have a few more questions than usual about what can and cannot be recycled. Let our December e‐newsletter help to guide you this year. The following list of typical holiday recyclables are accepted by SOCRRA for recycling in your recycling cart — not just during the holidays, but year round!

  • Aluminum Trays (emptied and rinsed)

  • Plastic packaging (any plastic containers)

  • Cardboard boxes (flattened & cut to size)*

  • Boxboard

  • Gift boxes

  • Food and beverage cartons

  • Holiday greeting cards (including photo cards)

  • Wrapping paper, tissue paper, paper gift bags & paper tubes

Please dispose (or reuse if possible!) the following items: Disposable party supplies such as used paper plates, napkins and plastic utensils, plastic wrap, ribbons, packing peanuts, plastic bubble wrap.

*Visit www.socrra.org for more information and directions for preparation.

Celebrate Recycling in November!

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SOCRRA E-News Update | November 2017

Each November, SOCRRA recognizes America Recycles Day, a national awareness campaign about the importance of recycling. Recycling is the easiest thing we can all do to improve our community, conserve natural resources, and create green jobs. And don’t forget, for every ton of recyclables, SOCRRA member communities EARN money. So the next time someone says “why bother to recycle?”, here are a few things you can say. Thank you for recycling!

  • Over 75% of waste is recyclable

  • It takes 17 times less energy to make products from recycled materials than from virgin resources.

  • Your city pays $27.00 per ton to dispose of curbside trash.

  • SOCRRA rebates your community $20.00 per ton for curbside recycling.

  • Recycling tonnages are increasing due to the new recycling carts (see side bar for more info!).

New Carts = Increase in Recycling! This America Recycles Day, SOCRRA is celebrating the increase in the amount of recyclables collected since the implementation of the new recycling carts. Data from October 2017 is 30% higher compared to the same month last year. SOCRRA received 2,059 tons of curbside recycling last month, which is the highest monthly total in at least 10 years! Trash tonnage has also been significantly lower.


Construction Update: Recycling Drop‐Off Center to Close After October 7th Until Further Notice

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SOCRRA E-NEWS UPDATE | September 2017

SOCRRA is converting its Material Recycling Facility (MRF) to be able to process mixed recycling. Construction started in the spring of 2017 and is currently underway.

Due to the final phase of construction, SOCRRA must restrict access to the Recycling Drop‐off Center, including the paper shredder and Styrofoam recycling . The last day of operation will be Saturday, October 7th, until further notice.

Household Hazardous Waste and Electronics Waste services will also be limited during this time. More information about temporary collections of these types of wastes will be shared on SOCRRA’s website and Facebook page as soon as available.

SOCRRA apologizes for this temporary disruption in service. Closing the site is necessary to ensure the safety of residents and construction crews working on the recycling facility. The site will re‐open sometime after the recycling facility construction is complete.

What can residents do with materials during this temporary closure?
Many of the materials collected at the Recycling Drop‐off Center are also accepted curbside, so residents are encouraged to recycle as much as they can in their curbside recycling cart. For information about what you can recycle curbside, please click here.

For materials not accepted curbside such as scrap metal, Styrofoam, plastic bags, hardcover books, clothing, plastic bottle caps, CDs, DVDs, VHS tapes, cassettes, and floppy disks, residents are encouraged to hold on to materials until the site reopens.

There are alternative options for some materials. For plastic bags, check your local grocery store for plastic bag and film recycling containers (we spotted collection barrels near the bottle return departments at several area grocery stores). For Styrofoam, visit this website for additional drop‐off locations in the Metro Detroit area.

For household hazardous waste and electronics, special collection events will be conducted during this time. Please visit SOCRRA’s website and follow on Face‐ book for updates and details once available.

Thank you for your patience and understanding during this exciting but busy time. These temporary disruptions will lead to long‐term improvements to provide top‐notch services.

Cart Delivery Update

SOCRRA completed delivery of 95,400 carts on September 8th. SOCRRA has already experienced an increase in recyclables collected in August compared to last year. We are excited to see what September brings! Carts = increase in recycling tons! 

Your Questions Answered!

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SOCRRA E-News Update | August 2017

SOCRRA cannot thank our residents enough for making the transition to carts go so smoothly. Here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions.

I have always put Styrofoam and plastic bags in my curbside bin. Why the change with the new recycling cart?
Styrofoam and plastic bags have never been okay to place in your curbside bin. If you were putting these materials in your bin, they ended up getting sorted out as trash at the recycling facility. Styrofoam is accepted at SOCRRA’s drop off center and we’re proud to say we are now the largest recycler of foam in the state!

Plastic bags get too contaminated when mixed with other recyclables in the bins and can cause major problems if they get tangled in the equipment at the recycling facility. But they are also accepted at SOCRRA’s drop off center and many stores now have drop offs for plastic bags. The only plastic bag that is acceptable to place in your cart is a see through bag filled with shredded paper.

Why the change to no longer accept batteries and scrap metal with the new recycling carts?
Safety is the primary reason these items are no longer collected in your new recycling cart. Batteries can pose a fire hazard at the recycling facility and scrap metal can easily damage the equipment. As with plastic bags and Styrofoam, batteries and scrap metal can be recycled at the SOCRRA Drop-off Center, 995 Coolidge Highway in Troy.

Why can’t I recycle my old bin in my new cart?
The old curbside bins are too bulky to collect in the new recycling carts. Please bring unwanted bins to SOCRRA’s Drop-off Center, 995 Coolidge Highway in Troy – they will be sent back to the manufacturer to be recycled. Please consider reusing your old bin – they make great storage containers for the garage or basement and can also be used to collect recyclables before placing them in your new cart.

Cart Delivery Update

Cart delivery is happening, and  fast!  For up to date progress,  visit www.socrrarecycling.org and click on “Cart Delivery”.   Click on your city and learn  about when cart delivery starts  and delivery status. 

Now Available: All You Need to Know About Mixed Recycling and New Carts

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SOCRRA E-News Update | July 2017

As the launch of mixed recycling and delivery of the new recycling carts approaches, SOCRRA has developed a website with all the details you will need to know. Available via www.socrrarecycling.org, the website is your go‐to resource, providing information about:

  • Timing of cart delivery

  • An overview of mixed recycling

  • Updates on the construction underway at the recycling facility

  • Frequently asked questions

Please visit the website today and continue to use it as your resource throughout the summer!

Cart Delivery Information

The most popular question we receive at SOCRRA lately is “When will I get my new recycling cart?”. With SOCRRA delivering 100,000 carts this summer, it is difficult to provide a specific answer. What SOCRRA can share is the tentative start date of delivery in your community. SOCRRA thanks you for your patience during this exciting time!

Cart Delivery Starting in July

  • Ferndale

  • Royal Oak

  • Troy*

Cart Delivery Starting in August

  • Berkley

  • Clawson

  • Hazel Park

  • Oak Park

Stay up‐to‐date via our website, Facebook page and our monthly newsletter to learn about exciting recycling news at SOCRRA!

Easier Recycling Makes It Way to You!

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SOCRRA E-News Update | June 2017

Recycling is about to get a lot easier for residents in SOCRRA communities. This summer, SOCRRA will deliver a 65-gallon recycling cart to every single-family household in its member communities. And because SOCRRA is converting to a Mixed Recycling facility, ALL curbside recyclables can be mixed together in the new cart! No need to keep paper separate from the other recyclables – just throw it all in and wheel it to the curb. Recycling will now be as easy as taking out the trash!

“We are excited to launch Mixed Recycling and deliver the new curbside carts”, says Jeff McKeen, General Manager of SOCRRA. “These changes will make recycling easier than ever for our residents.” Not only will recycling be easier, but the new carts will help residents to recycle more. The new carts can hold three Ɵmes more recyclables than the current recycling bins!

Cart delivery will begin in mid-July and finish up in September. There are a lot of SOCRRA residents, so we won’t be able to pinpoint an exact delivery date. But as soon as you get your cart, you can start using it! Look for the info card that will be with your cart and remember – with Mixed Recycling, all curbside recyclables go together in one cart!

For More Information:

Check out your new recycling cart! Carts and information are on display at locations throughout the SOCRRA communities—check your local library or city hall. And look for carts and information at upcoming events around your city.

Stay up to date on mixed recycling and cart delivery! Additional information is available on SOCRRA’s website including a Frequently Asked Questions sheet about carts and mixed recycling. To stay up to date on these exciting initiatives, please follow SOCRRA on Facebook.


Two SOCRRA communities tested the use of mixed recycling carts and continue to use them today: A section of Beverly Hills, and the entire City of Huntington Woods.

Stay up‐to‐date about the Mixed Recycling Launch and Cart Delivery via our Facebook page and our monthly newsletter to learn about exciting recycling news at SOCRRA!

Spring into Composting

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SOCRRA E-News Update | APRIL 2017

Whether you grow flowers, vegetables, houseplants or herbs, you know the importance of using great soil. And that means using compost. Composting, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, “is a process that speeds up natural decomposition of organic materials.”

Composting has a wealth of benefits. Environmental benefits include reducing the methane emitted by decomposing food in landfills and improving soil structure. You save money by creating your own nutrient-rich soil amendment, so you can skip buying fertilizer at a store. And it can even reduce the fees that your city (and ultimately you) must pay to collect these materials curbside.

Given all this, you’d think everyone would be composting. Not so. According to a survey by the National Waste and Recycling Association, some 72 percent of Americans don’t compost. But 67 percent say they would be open to doing so as long as it’s easy and doesn’t cost anything extra.

Here’s a few things to consider as you get started:

“Dig” into some research.
There are many books and websites that outline the basic steps of composting. Do some quick research to get familiar with the process and determine the best starting place for your effort.

Composting comes in all shapes and sizes.
Live in an apartment or condo? Try vermicomposting! Have a large backyard? Check out larger systems to capture yard waste and food waste.

Avoid common mistakes.
Composting has been around forever, so learn from those who’ve composted before you! There are simple techniques to avoid odors or other nuisances while composting.

Article source: Earth911

SOCRRA has BIG changes coming soon!

Stay up‐to‐date via our Facebook page and our monthly newsletter to learn about exciting recycling news at SOCRRA!

Spring Break Eco-Style

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SOCRRA E-News Update | March 2017

Spring break is just around the corner! The blistering cold and snow storms may have you heading South for the week. Before you hit the road—remember to bring your reuse and recycling habits with you wherever you go. Don’t take a vacation from green living!

The following tips will help green your spring vacation:

  • Reusable Containers: Perfect for packing snacks, whether you’re planning a long road trip or flying to an exciting destination, choose to reuse.

  • On the Road Again: Look for recycling containers at rest stops, state parks and shops along the way. Sometimes these places have just a few recycling containers or have one central location for recycling. If recycling container is not visible, bring a reusable bag to collect your recyclables until you find one.

  • Remember to Rinse: Be sure to rinse out all plastic bottles and aluminum cans if you are temporarily storing them until you find a container.

  • Carry In, Carry Out: Protect our national parks and beautiful beaches by bringing only items that you can recycle or dispose of on site.

Plan for Earth Day Today

Earth Day is a next month! What will you do to celebrate? Why not engage your co-workers in Earth-friendly activities? Try these simple suggestions:

  • Create a carpool e-mail chain

  • Walk or bike to work

  • Organize a recycling event

  • Bring in mugs/reusable bottles for the employee lounge

  • Learn how to start a recycling program at work

Be a Super (Bowl) Recycler

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SOCRRA E-News Update | FEBRUARY 2017

Sports fans are ready for some football this weekend. Whether hosting a party or attending one, there are many ways to encourage the three Rs (reduce, reuse, recycle) for your next gathering .

  • Choose Finger foods: Plastic utensils and plates are designed for the trash can. Consider preparing a finger food menu served on reusable dishes.

  • Ditch Disposables: Make a plan for dirty dishes to be loaded in the dishwasher or soaked in a container with soapy water to help make cleanup easier.

  • Carpool: Encourage guests to carpool to the watch party to reduce the carbon emissions.

  • Cloth decorations: Cloth napkins, banners and pennants with the team logos or colors are fun reusable party ideas.

  • Recycling Bin: When guests, arrive explain recycling rules and point out the recycling bin location.

  • Signage: Recycling containers should have a sign on or above them to remind guests to recycle. Don’t forget to include a list or photos of what is recyclable.

SOCRRA’s Valentine’s Day Eco‐Friendly Tips

  1. Give experiences not things —plan a trip, a hike or a picnic.

  2. Purchase flowers locally from a farmers’ market.

  3. Ditch the card—record a video message or make your own card.

Resident Reminder

No Change to Garbage & Recycling Collection on Feb. 20

Celebrate a New Year by Ditching Your Old Stuff

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SOCRRA E-News Update | January 2017

An old computer, books, coffee mugs and other unwanted items often find their way to the basement for storage after the holidays. SOCRRA has suggestions for reusing and recycling old stuff in the new year.

  • Donate your gently-used items to a thrift store or charity.

  • Bring electronics, batteries even hard cover books to SOCRRA’s Hazardous Waste Drop off site during normal business hours. Available only for residents of our 12 SOCRRA communities.

  • Old coffee mugs can find a new home in your office breakroom for coworkers to reuse.

  • Host a FreeCycle at your office or school in 3 easy steps:

    • Invite co-workers to bring in usable items to work in a designated area for the FreeCycle.

    • Promote space as one-day event or permanent breakroom feature

    • Attendees are encouraged to take as many items as they choose.

Garbage & Recycling Collection Holiday Schedule Changes

In celebration of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday, Monday, Jan 16 collections be delayed by one day. SOCRRA will be closed Jan. 16 and will reopen on Tues. Jan. 17