An overcast Wednesday morning might not seem the moment to hit the spotlight, but it all reflected well on the Recycling Pilot Project located on Jefferson behind the Studio Village Shopping Center. September 1, 2021 was a day for Culver City staff and local officials joining with CalRecycle representatives to note the tremendous success of the pilot project that has returned ‘bottle and can’ recycling to Culver City.
When RePlanet Recycling abruptly closed in 2019, most of the state of California was left without a mechanism to process CRV (California redemption value) funds. The people who had been turning in cans and bottles for cash had no where to go, and so did lots of recyclable material that ended up going to landfill.
Culver City has partnered with CalRecycle to set up redemption centers in easy to access places – the Studio Village location and the Raintree Shopping Center location – so that residents and people from other nearby cities can return to the habit of recycling. The mobile redemption centers, which alternate locations on different days, allow for easy ( and COVID-safe) access for people to drive up, have their pre-separated bottles and cans taken from the trunk, and receive cash on the spot for the CRV.
Mayor Alex Fisch was on hand, along with Environmental Programs & Operations Manager Kim Braun, Environmental Coordinator Cathi Vargas and CCUSD Sustainability Specialist Sandrine Cassidy, to watch the operation in progress and talk about the success of the pilot program.
Fisch noted that all the statistics showcased growth, “from November of 2020 to July of 2021, the local program showed a more than 300% increase in customers and recycled materials.”
The Beverage Container Recycling Pilot Program, created by Senate Bill 458, authorizes CalRecycle to approve up to five pilot projects proposed by local jurisdictions to explore innovative, new models for CRV redemption in underserved areas.
Other cities creating pilot programs include Irvine (personalized pick up of recyclable materials) and Menlo Park (permanent recycling center locations.) Assembly Bill 54 made changes to the pilot program to allow for greater flexibility and to provide up to $5 million in pilot project grant funding for approved projects.
Culver City has a schedule for sites that includes Mondays, Tuesdays, and Saturdays at Raintree (behind Ralph’s) and Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at Studio Village (behind Party City.)
For more information, just click the ad on the banner at the top of the site (CulverCityCrossroads is happy to help spread the word and support the program.)
Photo left to right – Kim Braun, Alex Fisch, Cathi Vargas, Sandrine Cassidy