Contact: Kara Villamil, or Mona S. Rowe






UPTON, NY - A new recycling agreement between the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory and Brookhaven Town, a leader in municipal recycling, takes effect today.

Under the agreement, BNL will send its nearly 1,500 tons of recyclable materials to the town's main recycling facility. It is expected to save the Lab nearly $17,000 annually and increase the rate of recycling by BNL's 3,000 employees and thousands of visiting scientists.

The Town, which sells its collected recyclables to companies that reclaim the materials for use in new products, is also expected to benefit.

"This will strengthen our relationship with the town, while making it easier for the Lab to do the right thing environmentally," said John Marburger, BNL Director. "Every bottle, every piece of paper that we recycle is a symbol of our commitment to the environment."

Under the contract, BNL will continue to collect and sort its recyclables, including paper, cardboard, plastic, cans, glass and construction debris. The Town will accept the materials as they are brought to its recycling facility in Yaphank, for further sorting and packaging.

The Town will continue to accept the Lab's putrescible waste, while BNL will continue to collect and package its hazardous, radioactive and mixed waste and send it off-site for storage or disposal by licensed contractors.

Each year, BNL recycles approximately 126 tons of paper, 20 tons of bottles and cans, 89 tons of cardboard, 844 tons of construction debris, and 17 tons of tires. Every work area around the Lab has several recycling bins and is assigned a recycling coordinator, and BNL's custodians are trained to ensure that recyclable materials are not thrown out.

Under the new contract, recycling will become even easier for the Lab's employees, as they will not have to separate different kinds of paper. BNL recycling staff expect recycling totals to rise as a result, which will benefit the Lab further by reducing tipping fees for putrescible waste. An on-site publicity campaign has begun to educate employees about the change.

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