Delaware announces recycling grant recipients

More than $700,000 has been awarded to schools, businesses and municipalities in the state.

November 30, 2016

Delaware Gov. Jack Markell, along with Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) Secretary David Small and Delaware Recycling Public Advisory Council (RPAC) Chair B.J. Vinton, have announced the recipients through the through the DNREC’s Recycling Assistance Grant Program.

A total of $714,076 was awarded to 24 recipients for this year’s grant program. Recipients, including schools, businesses and municipalities, will be using the grant money to either develop or expand waste reduction, reuse or recycling activities in the state. (Click here to see a full list of recipients.)  

The grants, in their sixth year, are a competitive, matching grant program. The program encourages recipients to provide at least 25 percent of the total project cost in either cash or in-kind services. Since the grant program’s inception, 112 grants, totaling more than $8.5 million, have been awarded to bolster recycling activities in the state.

“Delaware has made great strides in universal recycling – establishing a system that provides services that are cost effective and convenient for every residence and business, and that promotes jobs and economic growth,” says Markell. “As a result, in less than six years, we have gone from modest recycling statewide to diverting nearly 43 percent of recyclables from our landfills – ranking among the nation’s leaders in recycling. The grants we are announcing make it possible for us to increase diversion rates even more.”

“At the outset of his administration, Gov. Markell made recycling a priority for Delaware,” says Small. “I want to thank the governor, under whose leadership Delaware’s Universal Recycling Law, policies and programs have reduced landfill waste, conserved natural resources, saved Delawareans money, reduced greenhouse gases and improved the health of residents. As a result, 347,000 households receive curbside recycling service and an estimated 20,000 multi-family households receive recycling collection.”

Delaware’s RPAC is charged with advising the governor, DNREC and the Delaware Solid Waste Authority on all aspects of recycling, including developing grant criteria and selection of applications, the methodology for measuring recycling rates and outreach activities designed to achieve higher recycling rates.

Council Chair Vinton says, “The Universal Recycling legislation will benefit Delaware for generations to come. As a result of the law, more than $17 million in investments and over 120 direct jobs have been created in the state. If we continue on the track set for us by the law, we will more than double the useful life of our existing landfills and stave off the need for new landfills by decades.”

The 2016 grant awardees include 13 schools, nine businesses and two municipalities.

Revenue for the program comes from a 4-cent recycling fee paid by retailers to the state on certain types of beverages sold as well as the proceeds from the state’s participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, a program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the power sector.