DTE Energy has installed downtown seven Bigbelly solar-powered trash compactor and recycling units. The smart units collect and compact trash on site and also gather aluminum and plastic containers for recycling.
The pilot program supports the company's Energize Detroit neighborhood revitalization initiative. Waste Management of Michigan Inc. installed the units and will maintain them. The compactors eliminate trash overflow, which helps keep away pests.
- Solar panels on the unit charge the battery powering the system. When the unit needs emptying the smart system sends a signal to Waste Management of Michigan, reducing trash collections and vehicle carbon emissions.
"DTE is always exploring environmentally sound projects that are good for our employees, customers and the communities where they live and work," said Anthony Tomczak, executive director of Corporate Services for DTE Energy. "The solar compactors will not only help to keep our community clean, but will do so using a renewable form of energy."