Hall County Resource Recovery, along with three of its community partners, received a first-of-its-kind award for innovative methods at the Georgia Recycling Coalition (GRC) Conference earlier this month.
“Hall County Resource Recovery, along with Kubota, Southern Waste and Recycling and Wilheit Packaging, received the Innovation Award for their partnership in diverting waste coming from the Kubota manufacturing plant in Gainesville to the Hall County Landfill,” said Hall County Public Works Director Ken Rearden. “All four entities should be proud of this recognition and for their significant impact on the local environment.”
Rearden said the partnership between the four entities began in the fall of 2017 with an end goal of diverting as much waste as possible from the landfill. Kubota employees gather and place recyclables into cages, which are provided by Wilheit Packaging. Wilheit Packaging also transports the cages to the Hall County Recycling Center, where Hall County unloads the trucks and sort the materials by category. The materials are then weighed, processed and baled for shipping.
“So far, 1,500 tons of fiber and 160 tons of plastics have been diverted from the Hall County Landfill,” Rearden said. “This is an amazing example of a sustainability partnership that works precisely as it should.”
Southern Waste and Recycling is responsible for helping to build the alliance between the various companies. It then monitors and evaluates sustainability practices.
“This partnership has been both challenging and rewarding,” Hall County Solid Waste Division Director Johnnie Vickers said. “With the four entities working together, the challenges diminished by coordinating the delivery of products, developing a process to unload the trucks while keeping the recyclables and non-recyclables separate, and putting into place a procedure to gather the needed data for reporting and recording purposes.”
GRC is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization. Their mission is to complement and coordinate activities relative to recycling, to foster communications among professionals, organizations, government agencies and individuals, and to promote and enhance reduction and recycling programs throughout the state.
This is the first time in the history of GRC that a partnership project has been awarded the Innovation Award.