The City of Atlanta has been selected as a Green City Award finalist by Waste & Recycling News for outstanding leadership and commitment to the introduction, education and implementation of a successful residential recycling program.

The Green City Awards recognize cities that are setting an example in reducing waste and boosting recycling efforts. As a finalist, the City of Atlanta will be honored at the Green City Awards ceremony on Thursday, March 21 at the Residential Recycling Conference (RRC) to be held March 19-21 at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare in Chicago.

One winner will be named from the three finalists in each category of small, mid, and large sized cities. Winners are decided by popular vote of the RRC attendees. If selected, the city will also be featured as a finalist in the March 18 issue of Waste & Recycling News.

“Atlanta is on its way to becoming a top-tier city for sustainability,” said Mayor Kasim Reed. “We have made incredible strides in our recycling efforts, and this recognition further demonstrates our commitment to making our city a better place to live, work and play.”

“The Department of Public Works is proud to represent the City of Atlanta at the Green City Awards,” said Deputy Public Works Commissioner Dexter C. White.

“As the department responsible for overseeing residential recycling, we could not have been happier when our City was selected as a finalist for innovation in expanding recycling education and outreach. The success of the Cartlanta initiative reflects the support of our customers citywide who are getting into recycling and furthering the city’s goals towards sustainability.”

Commissioner White will appear as a guest speaker at the conference to share information about the City of Atlanta’s commitment and dedication to recycling.

In October 2012, the city launched Cartlanta, an expanded residential recycling program with the intent to educate and improve recycling rates citywide. New 96-gallon recycling carts were delivered to 65,000 households at the rate of one thousand per day.

City of Atlanta residents generate about 96,000 tons of trash annually, which costs the city $7 million a year to dispose of in landfills. Currently, residents only recycle 12,000 tons annually, which leaves much room for improvement. Since the launch of Cartlanta, recycling rates have improved significantly.

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