Although Bradenton, Fla., loses 48 cents a pound collecting mixed plastics in a curbside program, profit from other recyclables will allow the city to incorporate its experimental plastics recycling into overall recyclables collection permanently, city officials said Sept. 25. Haven Simmons, Bradenton spokesman, said the new plastics collection program, which started June 17 with a $30,000 investment, will continue.
``We make $20 a ton profit on newspapers, $34 a ton profit in glass and 35 cents a pound profit in aluminum cans,'' said Simmons. ``This helps us absorb any cost we have on plastics.''
Residential demands for plastics recycling prompted the city to institute the plastics program, Simmons said.
Despite the additional costs, City Council has no plans to charge residents for plastics collection, Simmons said.
Ricardo Ramos, the city's superintendent of sanitation and recycling, said Bradenton sends about a ton a month of all plastics - except polystyrene foam - collected from some 4,000 households to Consource Plastic Recycling in Tampa, Fla. For its effort, the city makes 2 cents a pound, but Ramos said to make the collection program profitable, the city would have to earn 50 cents a pound.
The plan now is to expand the plastics collection program to all 10,000 Bradenton households. Expansion will include buying three truck-mounted compactors to complement the one already operating.
The town has a population of about 50,000, Ramos said.