Sun, Surf, Stream

Miami-Dade Co. opens single-stream facility with WM.

In July, as part of a newly announced partnership between Houston-based Waste Management and Miami-Dade County, Fla., a 100,000-sq.-ft. single-stream recycling facility was opened in Pembroke Pines, Fla. The facility will be operated by Waste Management Recycle America (WMRA), which claims it will process up to 1,000 tons of recyclables per day.

According to a company press release, the $12 million, retrofitted facility, will use a single-stream process, resulting in a 30 percent increase in the recovery of recyclable materials. It will have the capacity to sort, process and bale 40 tons of recyclables per hour, which the company claims is the largest capacity of any facility in the state.

“Items recycled at our state-of-the-art facility provide Miami-Dade County residents significant environmental benefits,” said Patrick DeRueda, president of WMRA, in a press release. The new facility is part of Waste Management's commitment to triple the amount of recyclables it manages by 2020. The company operates 31 single-stream facilities throughout the country and plans to open or break ground on at least four more this year. “With more than 340,000 households, the new Miami-Dade recycling program can make a tremendous positive impact on our environment,” said Kathleen Woods-Richardson, director of the county's Department of Solid Waste Management, in a press release.

The county began single-stream collection June 30. Since 1990, it had operated a dual-stream system. In 2007, the county's diversion rate was 6 percent. According to the county, it expects to see a dramatic increase after switching to single-stream collection — similar to the 50 percent increase in Collier County, Fla., after its switch to single-stream recycling.