John Gerzema: Green & Green
Using truck-mounted scales and bins with electronic identification tags, RecycleBank weighs the paper, glass, and metal left on the curb by individual households and rewards them with shopping discounts.
With a population of fifteen thousand and a land area of less than four square miles, the city of Everett Massachusetts collects as much as forty tons of solid waste on a given trash day. For years less than ten percent of this burden was recycled, leaving a substantial amount to be disposed of at landfills or incinerators at a cost of roughly $75 per ton. With landfills and other trash-handling facilities already overburdened, the cost to taxpayers and the environment rises every year.