The city of Fort Worth recently launched a campaign aimed at educating people about what specifically they’re supposed to be recycling. The city says too many people are putting the wrong things in the recycling bin, and it’s costing millions in taxpayer dollars. The city says about 30% of what people are putting in their recycling bins is actually contaminated and ends up in the landfill. So the city is asking people to wait and think about where that item really should be going.

At the Republic Services Recycling Facility in Fort Worth, you’ll find a moving maze of conveyor belts, specialized machines and people sorting materials by hand. “Here on pre-sort, we’re looking out for items that are gonna break our machines and that are gonna cause problems, hang-ups and jams,” he explained.

Things like water hoses, extension cords, Christmas lights and plastic bags all clog up the machines. “This is like an AI system,” Hillman said. “It knows what the material is, it knows how to recognize it and therefore knows where to sort it.” Every day, 400 tons of plastic containers, cardboard boxes, aluminum cans and glass are resold or repurposed from the Fort Worth facility alone. It’s a money maker for both the company and its contractor: the city of Fort Worth.

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Author: Macy Jenkins, Fox 4 KDFW
Image: Fox 4 KDFW