Paper360 - March/April 2015 - (Page 32)

millwise | RECYCLING Changing Fiber Dynamics Impact single-stream Waste Processing at Cincinnati MrF Mixed paper percentages at giant Rumpke merf decline in recent years as digital trend continues. KEN PATRICK For collection cost reasons mainly, single-stream processing of today's U.S. waste streams appears to be winning-out over sorted waste collection and processing. As Brad Dunn, recycling operations manager, Cincinnati, Ohio, for waste processing giant Rumpke, notes, "a lot of the reasons come down to the hauling side." Today's collection and transportation economics strongly favor single stream, he points out. Paper360° magazine recently visited the renovated Rumpke Recycling Materials Recovery Facility (MRF), commonly known as a "merf," in the Cincinnati suburb of St. Bernard, as part of a Packaging Consortium PaC Next tour. The company's Cincinnati merf is one of the largest single-stream processing facilities in the United States. Within its 100,000 sq. ft. building, the $32 million plant can process 60-plus tons per hour and up to 20,000 tons of residential and commercial waste materials monthly, some 62 percent being "fiber" materials that include newspaper, mixed paper, and old corrugated containers (OCC) along with various other paperboards. Dunn further explains that the hauling economics of single-stream involve a mixture of advantages. "When you have a truck that has five, six, or seven compartments on it (as used with pre-sort collections), inevitably one of those is going to fill up before the other ones, and you have to pull off route. You don't compact sorted materials, so it costs a lot more for the haul. With single stream, we use rear loaders, side loaders, and front loaders, so that we can compact the material and increase our hauling efficiencies. Single stream greatly reduces the costs of putting a truck on the street and collecting material because it doesn't have to go back and forth to the merf," he says. Economics of the haul are critical, Dunn emphasizes, because the fees Rumpke charges for curbside collections basically cover just the hauling costs. In that regard, he says Brad Dunn, recycling operations manager at Rumpke's Cincinnati, Ohio, MRF. 32 Paper360º MARCH/APRIL 2015 Rumpke has converted a very high percentage of its customers from relatively small 18-gallon bins to much larger containers, ranging from 30-gal. to 95-gal. capacity, which significantly helps hauling efficiency because pickups can be extended from weekly to every-other week, while still servicing the customer's needs. "You actually end up with more recycling coming from households because they have more space to put it. It's all about maintaining our costs, cutting them where we can, and improving our efficiencies," he says. CHANGING FIBER DYNAMICS Single-steam processing has changed over the years, according to Dunn-with increasingly less fiber, overall. The OCC makeup, in particular, has changed because people are buying more and more things off of the Internet. "As a result, we're seeing much smaller packaging containers in today's waste stream, while the overall volume of corrugated materials is increasing. Five years ago, there might have been 6 percent corrugated in full stream, but during the past year, we've seen right at 15 percent OCC. That's a big increase. "If you look at the stream overall, today's 62 percent fiber content, including newspaper, mixed paper, and corrugated, just a few years ago was well more than 70 percent. Plastics today are running about 8 percent, metals (aluminum, steel cans, etc.) are about 3.6 percent, and glass is averaging above 15.5 percent. Aseptic containers in the Cincinnati market are currently less than 1 percent, and our residue stream is fluctuating around 10 percent. At least half of the residue is material that shouldn't have come here anyway. The remaining 5 percent is material that the system can't effectively sort for various reasons (material is wet that day, paper is too small to recover, etc.)," Dunn says.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Paper360 - March/April 2015

Guest Editorial
Over the Wire
TAPPI's Centennial: A Celebration 100 Years in the Making
Precision Alignment of Winders
Single-stream Waste Processing
iRoll at Irving
Fully Automated Continuous Digester
Twin Roll Press Upgrade
TAPPI Journal Summaries
Effluent Treatment
Microfibrils to Transform Paper Furnish
Consolidation Watch
Knowledge Builder
New Energy Windfall
Power from Waste
Safety Survey
Association News
Online Exclusives
Advertisers Index

Paper360 - March/April 2015