Mecklenburg County Committee Recommends New Requirement for Construction Site Recycling

Will you have to keep one of these on your job site?

Will you have to keep one of these on your job site?

A Mecklenburg County advisory committee recommended changes last week to the existing Source Separation Ordinance (SSO) that would remove a Temporary Site exemption and begin requiring recycling on all construction and demolition sites. REBIC and the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce were the only members of the committee to not vote in support of the changes, which would also extend recycling requirements to thousands of small business owners across the county.

If the changes are approved by the Board of County Commissioners late this year, residential construction sites that contract for the pickup of at least 8 cubic yards of trash per week (determined by how often a 30-cubic-yard container is emptied) would be required to establish a process for collecting all corrugated cardboard from their job sites and separating it from the normal waste flow. This would necessitate either the use of separate recycling bins on most jobsites, or the use of a Mixed-Waste hauler who would separate the recyclable material off-site.

Because of REBIC’s engagement on this issue, the committee agreed to recommend that the recycling requirement not take effect for single-family home builders until 2016.

Elimination of the Temporary Site exemption was proposed in the most recent update of the county’s Solid Waste Management Plan, as a way to capture the estimated 7,600 tons of corrugated cardboard and 4,200 tons of wooden pallets the county believes now passes through local construction sites each year.

REBIC is advocating instead for Mecklenburg County to enact an incentive-based pilot program to encourage builders to take steps to voluntarily recycle on their job sites. We’ll be educating members of the county commission on our concerns about the cost and logistical challenges of implementing mandatory recycling on all single-family construction sites, particularly for smaller builders. The proposed ordinance will also need to be approved by each of the six local Towns before it can take effect.

For more information on the proposed rule changes, check out the county’s Source Separation website.

If your company already has an on-site recycling program in place, we’d like to know the details. Also, how would the current proposal impact your business? Please e-mail us at Joe.Padilla@REBIC.com.

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