Figuring out how to recycle specific items can often require some research, but a new program rolled out by the city of Newark aims to provide residents all the information they need, right at their fingertips.
“The city is excited to launch our Recycle Coach web app containing all the information our residents need to know, tailored to Newark, about our residential refuse and recycling services,” Public Works Director Tim Filasky said in a prepared statement.
The Recycle Coach website and mobile phone app, which is used by a number of municipalities around the country, includes a search engine where users can “ask” a cartoon monster named Milo how to recycle a specific item. The website then explains if the item can go in a curbside recycling bin or if there are special instructions for recycling. For instance, it tells users that soda cans and plastic bottles can go into normal recycling, while batteries have to be taken to a Delaware Solid Waste Authority collection station.
Recycle Coach also provides a personalized trash and recycling pick-up schedule based on a user’s address and allows the user to sign up for weekly reminders. In addition, residents can use the app to report a problem with their pick-up, request a new trash or recycling cart and schedule a bulk pickup.
“This initiative by the City of Newark aims to increase the community’s recycling knowledge and elevate recycling in the local environmental conversation by making the recycling program simple, engaging, and easy to navigate,” Jenny Darden, a spokeswoman for the city, said in a prepared statement.
The city is paying the Toronto-based Recycle Coach $5,900 over three years to run the service, according to Jayme Gravell, another city spokeswoman. The entire cost is funded by a state grant.
To use the program, visit newarkde.gov/recyclecoach or download the Recycle Coach smartphone app.