Recycling contamination enforcement begins on June 1, 2024

Recycling contamination enforcement begins on June 1, 2024

In April 2023, the Miami-Dade County Board of County Commissioners passed an ordinance aimed at reducing recycling contamination: items that are not accepted in the Department of Solid Waste Management’s (DSWM) single-stream recycling program. Per the ordinance, DSWM enforcement officers were given the authority to inspect the contents of recycling carts placed at the curb for collection, which may entail opening and looking inside a cart to ensure the materials set out do not consist of contaminants. When contaminants, or incorrect items, get into the recycling stream, they can render recyclable materials unusable and slow down or even stop the progress of sorting at the recycling facilities.  

On June 1, 2023, DSWM started a one-year educational period where enforcement officers inspect the contents of blue recycling carts placed at the curb for collection and tag contaminated carts with a yellow courtesy notice advising the customer of the contaminated items found in their cart. The residents are also provided with additional educational materials on how to #RecycleRight. If a recycling cart is tagged as being contaminated, it is not serviced by the department’s recycling collection contractor. Customers with a tagged recycling cart are responsible for removing the contaminated items from the recycling cart before the cart can be serviced, and the collection of the recycling cart does not occur until the customer’s next regularly scheduled recycling collection day. During the one-year educational period, fees were not assessed to customers with recycling carts tagged for contamination.

Beginning on June 1, 2024, customers with contaminated recycling carts that are tagged by DSWM enforcement officers will be given three (3) chances to take corrective action to remove non-recyclable items from their recycling cart. Repeat violators whose carts have been tagged more than three (3) times will be charged a $152 special collection and/or disposal fee for the service to remove the contaminated material from the recycling cart. 

Learn how to Recycle Right

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