In October, the City of Morgantown Green Team was awarded a $36,786 grant from the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) Rehabilitation Environmental Action Plan (REAP) for an educational Anti-Contamination Campaign.
The grant is one of the 27 issued by WVDEP this year, totaling more than $1.5 million for recycling assistance. The grant will be used to implement an Anti-Contamination educational Campaign and to hire a part-time position to manage the campaign.
Recycling contamination is an issue nationwide which results in higher labor costs and recyclable material being placed in landfills. The city’s Anti-Contamination Campaign will focus on educating the public about what items can and cannot be recycled in hopes of reducing contamination of items in recycling bins.
“People often put items that are not recyclable into recycling bins,” said Jim Kotcon, chair of the Green Team. “For instance, if someone puts a half-full coffee cup into a recycling bin, the coffee may spill and contaminate the other paper and plastic products in the bin, causing more work
and spoiling otherwise recyclable materials. We hope to educate residents of the importance of only recycling items that are clean and accepted by recycling services.”
The REAP grant will allow the city to hire a part-time Recycling Manager to oversee the campaign, assist four local schools with educational recycling projects and to assist in educating the public of the importance of recycling. The City of Morgantown plans to fill this position in early 2020.
“We’re very thankful for the support we are getting from both the WVDEP’s REAP program and the community,” said Kotcon. “Together, we can make a difference in recycling and make Morgantown a more sustainable city.”
The Morgantown Municipal Green Team consists of volunteers and was created in 2007 to advise the City Manager and Council on matters relating to environmental sustainability in public policy, planning, education, departmental management, and development.
For more information or to get involved with making Morgantown more sustainable, visit the Green Team webpage, or call 304-284-7405.