Allied Waste (previously BFI) has been providing the town monthly collection weights since the year 2000. The attached spreadsheet presents the weights for collected rubbish/trash, paper, commingled items, yard waste, and white goods (large appliances). Each sheet also shows percentages of the total for each commodity, but please use these numbers with caution. Comparison with other towns should only be made if the basis of the numbers is the same for both data sets. For example, one town may say that their recycling rate is 20%, but they may have a yard waste program that collects more than our town, and their yard waste numbers are included in the 20%. In our case, people may be doing a better job at composting or
putting grass clippings back on their yards. That would lower the amount of yard waste recycled. While the percentage recycled may be lower than another town’s, we may actually be doing a better job at handling yard waste.
Similarly, even though a better comparison would be through evaluating the percentage of commingled and paper recycling vs. trash, if the overall goal is to reduce the amount of trash, perhaps one town’s residents do a better job of “reducing” by not purchasing items with significant packaging. While it is not likely that there would be a noticeable difference due to this, you can see how numbers can be deceiving. Town growth and the number of total residents also have impacts on these numbers. Please keep these things in mind.
Click here to view monthly collection numbers from 2000 to the present.