Mass. Town Kicks Off Yard Waste Recycling Program

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In the past, Scituate, Mass. was spending about $30,000 annually to have yard waste ground up and hauled away. Beginning July 1,  Go Green Landscape Supply, a local recycling firm is going to pay the town about $600,000 over 10 years to lease a site where it will accept yard waste such as grass clippings and leaves at no charge to the town or residents. The company will then convert it into mulch and other saleable products, according to Boston.com,

“It’s very innovative,” says Tim Lopes, the owner of Go Green. “It’s a huge problem for municipalities to get rid of this stuff, and for the town of Scituate to actually be making money on their green waste is very unique.”

Turning yard scraps into marketable products is another easy way for your town to "go green." Photo: unc.edu

Turning yard scraps into marketable products is another easy way for your town to "go green." Photo: unc.edu

Beyond residential drop-offs, local landscapers, tree companies and excavation firms can also bring green waste to Lopes’ site.

“His firm uses grinding and screening machines to convert the grass, leaves, brush, stumps and other waste into sellable compost, loam, mulch, wood chips, and firewood,” according to the story.

The deal is a win-win for all parties involved. “The townspeople get seven days a week and longer hours to dump stuff,” says Lopes. “The town gets paid for their green waste, and I get a place to process green waste and run my business, and lots of raw materials.”

Public Works Director Albert Bangert says the new agreement will result in an additional $40,000 to $45,000 for the town in the first year, as a result of reducing disposal and labor costs as well as the company’s lease payments that will increase over time.

Lopes says even with the difficult economy, his business is faring well.

“My past experience tells me that even in a bad economy, people still want their homes to look beautiful,” he says.

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