- Rumpke Waste & Recycling has unveiled a $1 million renovation at its Dayton, OH mixed glass processing facility, which is one of the only facilities of its kind in the country, according to a company press release.
- The renovations include extended conveyors, an enhanced dust collection system, and a new technology to remove materials such as paper labels, dirt, dust and organics from the glass. The facility processes 60,000 tons of broken glass annually.
- The City of Dayton and the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency provided a $50,000 collaborative grant toward renovations.
Glass recycling has proven to be a challenge in 2016 for many businesses in the waste industry, with companies citing how difficult, dangerous and expensive it is to process. Cities like Houston eliminated glass recycling from collections contracts, and some facilities that have the proper equipment to process glass are hesitant to do so. However, for the businesses that have dedicated investments toward infrastructure and proper glass processing technologies — and have confidence in the system — glass recycling has been profitable.
In Kansas City, MO, Ripple Glass reported that its company quadrupled glass recycling since it launched in 2009, and now the only obstacle that keeps it from growing more is the lack of glass recycling awareness throughout the community. Now, in Dayton, Rumpke will need to be sure that consumers are aware of glass recycling capabilities to ensure there is incoming supply for the facility.
With a recent uptick in commodity prices, it will be interesting to see if the downward trend in glass recycling continues, or if businesses begin to slowly invest more in the operation. While commodity prices are just one piece of the puzzle, businesses will still need to figure out how to make glass recycling more safe for workers to handle in facilities — and may benefit from looking to companies like Rumpke for guidance.