Throughout the month of June, the City of Boise will be mailing out vouchers for a roll of Hefty® EnergyBags®, redeemable for one roll of 26 bags. The first wave of vouchers is expected to arrive in mailboxes this coming week, with the rest being delivered throughout the month. The vouchers will arrive as a tri-fold postcard, not as part of the utility bill. Once received, vouchers can be redeemed at Boise Albertsons, Target and both locations of the Boise Co-op. Each store is responsible for stocking EnergyBags® and customers can contact their local store to ensure they have the bags in stock.
Since the rollout in the Spring of 2018, the city has collected over 300 tons of hard-to-recycle plastics. The program was in response to drastic changes to the global recycling market and China’s ban on plastic imports. The program collects #4-#7 plastics as well as many other plastics that weren’t previously accepted, including foam, plastic bags and wraps.
This is the second distribution of EnergyBags® to residents. A roll of bags was originally delivered to residential recycling customers when the program launched in 2018. The city elected to mail vouchers this year to provide more efficient and accurate distribution as well as cut down on delivery issues.
Since the program’s start, plastics collected from City of Boise homes have been taken to Renewlogy, a Salt Lake City company that converts the plastic into diesel fuel. Renewlogy has been expanding its operations in the U.S. and Canada with two large facilities currently under construction in Phoenix and Nova Scotia, Canada. Renewlogy also is upgrading the equipment used to grind material at its Salt Lake City facility, temporarily delaying processing of Boise’s material. In addition to Renewlogy, the city is exploring additional end markets and innovative options for the management of all Boise’s resources.
A few reminders for EnergyBag ® use:
- #4-7 and specified plastics only. #1 plastics are the biggest contaminant in the EnergyBags®.
- No metal or paper in the EnergyBags®
- Once full, tie the EnergyBag® tightly and place inside the blue recycle cart
- The only plastics that should go loose in the blue cart are #1 and #2 plastics shaped like a bottle, jug or jar
- Plastic grocery bags should be returned to the store or collected inside the EnergyBag®. Plastic bags should never be put loose in the blue cart
Over the next several months, the City of Boise will be turning its attention to the importance of reducing the use of plastics, and other ways that citizens and local businesses can make a big impact on the management of the city’s materials. As recycling markets continue to shift and change, and the value of recyclables drops, it’s essential for citizens to play a role in reducing the amount of material they are using. This summer, citizens will have opportunities to give input and get involved in community waste reduction efforts.
More information on EnergyBags® and Boise’s recycling can be found here.