PARKLAND, Fla. (September 22, 2010) – In a remarkable public-private partnership that crosses county lines, the City of Parkland has introduced nine Waste Management Solar Powered Trash Compactors and separate recycling receptacles into city parks thanks to the generous underwriting of the Schatz Family Foundation based in Boca Raton.
“‘Environmentally Proud’ is on our City’s seal and Parkland was the first city in Broward County to introduce single-stream recycling,” said Parkland Mayor Michael Udine. “We want to thank the Schatz Family Foundation for its visionary gift of $50,000 to further our green initiatives which has enabled us to place a total of nine solar trash compactors and recycling units in Pine Trails and Terramar Parks.”
Waste Management Solar Powered Trash Compactors are completely self-powered, using built-in solar panels to compact trash. Each compactor is about the same size as a standard 35-gallon trash barrel and, when it reaches capacity, sensors trigger an internal compactor that flattens the contents, compressing 180 gallons of waste into easy-to-collect bags weighing approximately 30 – 40 pounds.
The latest generation of green technology was unveiled in a special presentation to students from Park Trails and Heron Heights Elementary Schools.
Representing the Schatz Family Foundation at the event, Jason Fineman said, “My grandfather saw that there is a need for us to become energy independent and our hope is that this kind of technology will be become the norm for all of you students.”
The units use built-in solar panels to compact trash that enables them to provide five times the capacity of a traditional trash receptacle. The units also include separate receptacles for collecting plastic bottles, aluminum cans and other recyclables.
“It seems very simple, yet this technology delivers up to an 80 percent reduction on collection costs, fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions,” said Dawn McCormick, Community Affairs Manager for Waste Management in South Florida.
The Schatz Family Foundation has also underwritten a solar power system at Florida Atlantic University’s College of Engineering and Computer Science and solar lighting at the University of Miami.
In 2008, the City of Parkland and Waste Management partnered to introduce single-stream recycling in Broward County, the process which allows paper, plastic, metal and glass recyclables to be commingled for collection in a single recycling cart.