May 22, 2024

Covered Recycling Bins with Wheels Should Be Available in Mercer County

To the Editor:

I noticed with dismay that we can now get another yellow recycling bin here in Princeton, and I assume throughout Mercer County. This doubles down on an inefficient and illogical program as the Mercer County Improvement Authority has actively banned the use of standard, wheeled, and covered blue recycling bins.

If you ask, as I did, why we can no longer use the wheeled, covered blue bins many of us (probably hundreds in the county) use to make trundling recycling to the curb easier, the answer is “They’re too heavy.”  But one wonders how heavy they are compared to an open yellow bin half filled with rain-soaked newspapers. And besides, they have wheels.  And, regarding the use of these lid-covered, dry, and easily moved bins, the suggestion was: “Go buy a lid and a cart if [moving bins] is an issue.” Well, as a senior citizen, it is, and the answer is condescending in the extreme.

Other communities nationwide systematically provide and use the blue recycling bins, e.g. Raritan Valley nearby, or even distant New Haven and Hamden, Conn., and some even use a single-driver truck that has an automated arm to lift, empty, and return these bins to the curb. Weight and size are not an issue. But for us, it’s another clunky yellow bin.

The Mercer County Improvement Authority should take a hard look at its banning of the blue bins and refresh its understanding of how to encourage recycling by making it more convenient and efficient for county citizens. For we senior citizens, dragging rain-soaked yellow bins to the curb is definitely not the answer.

David H. Miller
Hawthorne Avenue