Shore town is first in N.J. to offer curbside ‘plastic film’ recycling

A Monmouth County coastal municipality is the first in New Jersey to offer curbside plastic film recycling. 

(Courtesy of Clean Ocean Action)

(Courtesy of Clean Ocean Action)

A Monmouth County coastal municipality is the first in New Jersey to offer curbside plastic film recycling.

In partnership with SC Johnson, a manufacturer of household consumer products, Bradley Beach is set to launch a pilot program that will allow residents to recycle plastic bags, film, and wraps for a year-long period starting in November.

“This is a win for the environment, a win for Bradley Beach residents, and a win for the plastic recycling market,” Bradley Beach Mayor Gary Engelstad said in a prepared statement. “By participating in this program, residents can help safeguard our coast and minimize our plastic waste.”

Engelstad says SC Johnson is funding a collection vehicle, curbside bins, and community engagement materials to raise awareness of the pilot program, which functions by residents placing clean and dry plastic film into a plastic bag that is deposited in a special curbside bin collected on recycling day.

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The borough’s Department of Public Works will then sell the film to an end-market purchaser.

The program is set to begin as the New Jersey legislature mulls a ban on single-use plastic bags  — among other products — that has not yet had a hearing.

A just-released Monmouth University poll found that about two in three New Jersey residents said they supported a plastic bag ban, but many backed away from that zeal when presented with specifics about how it would impact their shopping habits.

When given several options, only 31% of respondents supported a complete ban on single-use plastic bags. Another 27% suggested that consumers should pay a fee for the bags, and 39% stated that stores should be able to continue to give them out for free.

WHYY’s Joe Hernandez contributed to this report. 

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