(Cherry Hill, N.J.) – Cherry Hill has been awarded a $140,641 recycling tonnage grant from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, Mayor Chuck Cahn has announced.
The Township’s award is the eighth-largest allotment of its kind in the state, up two spots from 2011; it is the highest amount awarded in South Jersey. The grant total was based on the amount of recycled material collected in the Township in 2010.
“This is wonderful news, and, in my mind, is proof that doing the right thing really does pay off,” Cahn said. “We save money for every ton of material that we keep out of our landfills and incinerators, and now we’re actually bringing in revenue in the form of this grant. It’s a win for the Township, our residents, and, of course, the environment.”
The grant program is part of New Jersey’s Recycling Enhancement Act (REA), and funding comes from a $3-per-ton tax on trash taken to disposal facilities. This year, the DEP noted that Cherry Hill was one of just 10 municipalities whose grant totals were greater than the REA taxes they paid.
Cherry Hill’s overall recycling rate stands at 66 percent, significantly higher than the statewide average of about 40 percent. The DEP encourages municipalities to maintain a rate of at least 50 percent.
Residential recycling has grown tremendously in Cherry Hill in the last five years: In 2007, curbside recycling totaled 7,411 tons. By 2011, curbside recycling collection totaled 10,405 tons – and that number represents just a fraction of the Township’s overall rate.
The overall recycling rate includes single-stream curbside recycling; leaves and other yard waste; recycled wood; electronic waste, oil and tires deposited at the Department of Public Works; appliances and other “white goods”; and commercial recycling as reported by area waste haulers.
Mayor Cahn said the continued growth of the Township’s recycling rate is proof that residents and businesses alike have embraced recycling as an important part of their lives.
“These numbers reflect a true community-wide effort, and everyone who lives and works in this Township should be proud,” Mayor Cahn said. “With that said, today’s announcement presents an opportunity to recommit ourselves to the cause; to challenge ourselves to increase our totals even more as we move forward.”
Residents with questions about the Township’s recycling efforts can contact the Department of Public Works for more information at (856) 424-4422, or visit the Municipal website at www.CherryHill-NJ.com.