Sustainability Notes: Columbia grant targets grease; KC could shift trash collection

Restaurants in downtown Columbia can apply for funds to upgrade their grease storage systems under a grant made available by the Downtown Community Improvement District.

The grant is aimed at encouraging the restaurants to comply with a new City Council ordinance making it unlawful to put grease in trash compactors and dumpsters effective July 1. The District in downtown Columbia has around 100 restaurants and bars listed in its official website.

“The Downtown CID wants to encourage all restaurants in The District to be in full compliance with the new ordinance,” executive director Bob Hohenstein said in a statement.

“We are delighted to make this grant program available to assist our restaurant stakeholders.”

The fund, totaling $27,000, is being offered on a first-come, first-served basis. The deadline for the application is April 30.

The grant will match 50 percent of the cost of up to $1,000 for the installation of a restaurant’s new external storage system and will match 75 percent of the cost of up to $2,000 of a restaurant’s new internal system.

Kansas City developing plan to take over trash collection

Kansas City Manager Troy Schulte and city staff are set to present a plan to the city council in the next couple of months to take over trash collection service from private collectors, The Kansas City Star reports.

The move comes in response to the rising cost of trash collection and residents’ mounting complaints about uncollected trash. In February, the City Council issued a resolution, directing the city manager to develop a citywide plan to improve solid waste services through additional staffing, facilities, equipment and a source of funding.

According to the resolution, a recent survey on trash collection showed a 22 percent decrease in citizen satisfaction. The current contract for residential trash collection will expire in May 2020, and the cost is estimated to increase by $3.5 million annually. City officials believe that Kansas City can save $20 million over 10 years by handling its own trash pickup.

The city has been handling trash collection for some neighborhoods since the 1970s, outsourcing pickups in other areas.

No more mixing recyclables for Wildwood residents

Starting in April, residents of Wildwood in St. Louis County will have to separate their recyclables in response to new standards set by waste management company Meridian Waste. The move is affected by China’s policy on imports of some solid waste, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.

China has refused imports on 16 types of scrap materials, including scrap metals and scrap plastics, since the end of 2018. Another 16 types, including wood pallets and stainless steel, will be banned beginning in late 2019.

Meridian has been using the service of major processing center Resource Management, but the latter instituted new sorting standards in October.

Wildwood residents will have to embrace dual-stream recycling by sorting their recyclables into separate rollcarts with pickups on alternating weeks for rigids waste like plastic, aluminum cans and metals, and for fibers such as paper and cardboard. The city and Meridian are still planning the locations where glass can be dropped off.

Missouri Business Alert’s sustainability coverage is funded in part by the Mid-Missouri Solid Waste Management District.

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