Come the fall, Westwood will begin rolling out its new automated trash and recycling collection program. Part of a five-year contract with Waste Management, the program is designed to help boost Westwood's recycling.
The initiative is part of a nationwide contest that aims to increase recycling by 50 communities throughout the country. The town or city with the highest reported recycling participation will receive a $100,000 grant from SC Johnson to put toward a local sustainability project.
"I think it's a great thing for the town itself, and the individual residents," said Westwood Department of Public Works Deputy Director Chris Gallagher. "For town purposes, $100,000 goes a long way, and when we're trying to improve a program that's already increasing recycling, I think it's a great opportunity to help each other out."
The challenge, additionally, is part of a partnership with Recyclebank, a company that rewards residents for taking green actions with discounts and deals. Residents in Westwood actually have the opportunity to use Recyclebank as part of the town's new trash and recycling collection contract with Waste Management.
Westwood will join more than 300 communities throughout the country and the United Kingdom that have implemented Recyclebank to help boost recycling rates through various incentives. Residents, in return, are reawarded with deals on everyday household and grocery items.
"You earn points every time you log in," Gallagher said. "You can also go online and fill out surveys and do educational material. Those points get you those rewards that are listed."
Those who wish to participate in Westwood simply need to sign up for an account through Recyclebank (it's free) and report their recycling activity on a frequent basis. Residents can even utilize the system through Recyclebank's app for iPhone and Android.
Such rewards include deals on SC Johnson products like Ziploc bags, Windex, Scrubbing Bubbles, Glade, as well as discounts from Bed Bath & Beyond, Macy's, the Olive Garden, and other venues (for a full list of rewards, click here).
“Waste Management and Recyclebank are providing residents with everything they need to live in a more environmentally responsible way — while getting rewarded for their recycling efforts,” Paul Pistono, vice president of public sector solutions at Waste Management, said in a statement. “By providing residents with rewards for recycling, we are confident that the majority will take the opportunity to make an impact on the environment. Our investment in Recyclebank is just one more way we are contributing to a more sustainable world by increasing recycling and reuse.”
More information on recycling in Westwood can be found on the town's website or by calling 781-251-2587.