After months of preparation and planning, the upgrade of the ReCommunity Detroit Material Recovery Facility to a single stream system was officially put into action yesterday, December 20th, 2011. The fully-automated facility will make recycling easier for Detroit area residents who can now put all of their recyclables into a single bin. The facility re-opened on the 20th, but is still in its beginning stages. In its full capacity, the plant will create 65 new jobs and prevent more than 320,000 metric tons of greenhouse gasses, the gasses responsible for global warming, from hitting the atmosphere. That’s the equivalent of taking approximately 59,000 cars off the road each year.
With a price tag of $4.5 million, the environmental impact alone wasn’t enough to persuade all that this was a good investment. However, in the long run, a material recovery facility (MRF) such as this one will end up being much cheaper than the cost of landfilling or burning these recyclables in an incinerator. Mike Csapo, general manager of the Resource Recovery and Recycling Authority of Southwest Oakland County also announced that the company plans to ship bales of the product worldwide, creating an export commodity for Michigan.
Revenue from this facility will be shared among the local communities, as well as with ReCommunity Recycling, which helped fund the expansion. With all of the money that can be saved by using this type of facility, MRFs are popping up nationwide. Only 70 plants existed in 2001, a number has more than doubled in the past 10 years.
Worldwide Recycling Equipment Sales, LLC has designed a full line of new Tuffman products specifically designed for those wanting to start up a new MRF, or expand or improve an existing facility. In addition to the Tuffman line, Worldwide offers many refurbished pieces of equipment used in plants, such as balers, shredders, crushers and conveyors.
An MRF is a plant that receives, separates and prepares recyclable materials for end-user manufacturers. A clean MRF only accepts commingled materials that have already been separated from municipal waste, while a dirty MRF accepts a mix of recyclables and waste. Most commonly, an MRF will consist of a single stream of material to be sorted, like the new Detroit plant. The materials travel on a conveying system manned by workers known as pickers who are each assigned to pick a different type of material off the line, thus separating waste from recyclables and commingled recyclables into groups of plastic, aluminum, glass, paper, etc.
Once the material has been sorted to specifications, it is ready to be baled, shredded, crushed or compacted in preparation for shipping. Condensing the material this way saves space, thus reducing shipping and storing costs, financially benefiting both the sorting facility and the end-user manufacturers.
The Tuffman line of sorting stations comes in a variety of sizes, including a 6-Man, 8-Man and 12-Man, as well as two “mini” models of 3-Man and 4-Man. The larger sizes are perfect for municipal solid waste recycling, in addition to construction and demolition waste separation. The “mini” models are better suited for separating plastics, papers and other light recyclables. Sorting stations are available in both stationary and portable models, and Worldwide Recycling Equipment Sales, LLC. will even build a custom-sized model to best suit any jobsite.
All Tuffman sorting systems come equipped with emergency shutoffs, stairs, walkways and sorting chutes. Productivity options such as crossbelt magnets and pre-screening attachments are offered for stationary models and break-away catwalks, skid mounting for added stability and hydraulic drive power are offered for portable. Tuffman sorting stations are powered by variable speed controls and have individual ladders for each picker station. If you want to increase efficiency and productivity, try our portable sorting station which comes mounted on a single axle trailer, allowing you to shorten the distance from the waste to the processing facility.
Aside from the sorting stations, the Tuffman line offers a variety of other products that complement our sorting stations or can be used on their own, such as trommel screens, magnets and conveyor belts. All Tuffman products are made new and come with a one year warranty.