City moves forward on ‘One Bin for All’ recycling idea

Jul. 14, 2014Houston Chronicle

The city of Houston has received five bids for its ambitious “One Bin for All” recycling proposal that Mayor Annise Parker hopes will dramatically decrease Houston’s landfill reliance.

One Bin For AllThe streamlined recycling program would allow residents to mix trash, recyclables, yard clippings, food and other waste in a single container, to be automatically sorted at a first-of-its-kind $100 million plant to be built and run by a private firm. The city issued a formal request for proposal in April.

“We have reached another key milestone in this process and are eager to move forward as this advanced recycling and waste diversion technology has the potential to improve health and quality of life not only in Houston, but around the world,” Parker said in a press release Friday.

The program is not without detractors.  The Texas Campaign for the Environment and other green groups have formed a coalition, “Zero Waste Houston,” protesting the city’s decision to mix trash with recyclables and the potential air quality effects of burning waste. The group released a July report on the program called “It’s Smarter to Separate: How Houston’s Trash Proposal Would Waste Our Resources, Pollute Our Air and Harm Our Community’s Health.”

The city will recommend a company for the project by the end of the year.