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Kent County residents asked to resist curbside recycling this week


The Grand Rapids Recycling Facility is shut down until further notice. The problem is with its baler. It’s the machine that compact recyclables like aluminum, paper or plastics into a giant block. It makes it easier for stacking and transporting.

With that key piece of equipment out of order, Kent County’s Department of Public Works explains it can’t process the 144 tons of materials it recycles on an average day. There are roughly 1,200 tons of materials waiting for processing.

Incoming recyclables are being sent to the Waste to Energy Facility. Kent County Public Works says this is not ideal but a better alternative to redirecting to a landfill.

The hope is to have the baler up and running by the end of the week.

Until then, the county is asking residents and businesses to “hold off placing recycling carts out for service for the next couple of days in anticipation of the facility being able to process recyclables again at the end of the week.”

Patrick Center, WGVU News.

Patrick joined WGVU Public Media in December, 2008 after eight years of investigative reporting at Grand Rapids' WOOD-TV8 and three years at WYTV News Channel 33 in Youngstown, Ohio. As News and Public Affairs Director, Patrick manages our daily radio news operation and public interest television programming. An award-winning reporter, Patrick has won multiple Michigan Associated Press Best Reporter/Anchor awards and is a three-time Academy of Television Arts & Sciences EMMY Award winner with 14 nominations.