Detroit was once the largest American city that didn’t offer curbside recycling. To end that dubious distinction, MEC and Zero Waste Detroit (ZWD) successfully lobbied City officials to launch a small curbside recycling pilot in 2009.
Our coalition was the driving force behind the expansion of that program to all single-family homes citywide in 2012. Since then, we’ve been signing up residents for free recycling carts all over Detroit -- at community meetings, concerts, festivals, on city streets, and in the neighborhoods. In 2017, ZWD had recruited 15,000 residents into the curbside recycling program.
MEC’s top goal is to increase recycling participation rates. Each month over 1,400 homes join the program, which puts Detroit on pace to hit the 30% recycling rate that Governor Snyder has targeted for Michigan as a whole by 2018. The ZWD team is leading the charge, signing up residents for free recycling carts daily at community meetings and other locations across the city.