TRINITY, Ala. (WHNT) — The City of Decatur Recycling Facility located in Trinity, is doing what it can to help keep trash out of local landfills.

Recycling Manager, Danny Dotson, told News 19 that the facility processed 6.3 million pounds of recycled materials last year.

“Just about every single piece of this stuff is actually touched by hand,” Dotson said about the recycling process.

He said that after the trucks dump the materials, workers use a combination of machines and hand sorting to go through the materials. They are then bundled and sent off to be turned into new products made out of recycled materials.

Dotson said Decatur is doing a great job with recycling. The Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) is shooting for “50 by 30” which means 50% participation by 2030, and Decatur already exceeds that with a 56% participation rate.

The facility will soon be able to sort more materials, to keep up as the city of Decatur grows.

The facility recently received a $630,000 grant from ADEM. The grant will help with an expansion of the existing facility and some other upgrades.

A look inside the City of Decatur Recycling Facility.

“It’s going to be a little over 6,000 square foot and our tipping floor is going to double in size,” Dotson said about the expansion. “With this expansion, we can take more, and try and keep everything out of the landfill.”

In addition to the expansion, the funding will also help purchase a new recycling pick-up truck, and new 96-gallon collection bins.

A City of Decatur Recycling truck.

Dotson told News 19 that some households recycle so much that they currently have two bins. He said people who would like the larger bins can reach out to the recycling department directly.

Dotson said the funding couldn’t have come at a better time.

“The city is growing, and we need to grow with the city and we’re just thankful to get those grants from ADEM,” he said.

In addition to serving residents in Decatur, the facility also recycles materials collected in Morgan County, the city of Athens, the city of Hartselle, and the city of Cullman.

The Decatur Recycling Facility also received $50,000 to help encourage more people to recycle and to educate them about the program.

In Decatur, you can recycle:

  • Cardboard
  • Mixed paper
  • Newspaper
  • #1 plastics
  • #2 plastics
  • Aluminum, tin, & steel cans