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App appeal: recycling at your fingertips

United States – The advent of smart phones has opened up another recycling avenue, Mercer County officials in the USA have noted. In order to boost participation in local recycling programmes, they have developed a special green app for their residents, keeping them up to date on recycling at all times.

The new recycling tool can be downloaded free of charge and is compatible with iPhones, iPads and Android devices. The app will allow Mercer residents to select their township and recycling zones in order to check the days on which pick-ups are scheduled, and it can also provide recycling-related alerts. Apart from serving as a reminder, the app explains how to properly recycle different household items and includes information on the county’€™s special electronic waste and hazardous waste recycling days.

The app uses global positioning and camera functions to allow residents to reach out – for example, in the case of a missed pick-up or illegal dumping. ‘€˜All anyone has to do is select the report-a-problem function, take a picture and the problem is automatically e-mailed to us,’€™ explains Phil Miller, Executive Director of the Mercer County Improvement Authority (MCIA).

MCIA’€™s Chief of Recycling Dan Napoleon notes: ‘€˜We’€™ll be able to update the information on the app as necessary during the year, so it will always be current. That should lead to increased recycling rates – everybody wins.’€™ The app is expected to become available to BlackBerry users at some point in 2013, he adds.

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