In Partnership with Pratt Industries, Downtown Alliance Unveils Paper Recycling Program in Lower Manhattan

In Partnership with Pratt Industries, Downtown Alliance Unveils Paper Recycling Program in Lower Manhattan

Following Mayor Bloomberg’s goal to double the city’s recycling rate to 30 percent by 2017, 16 solar-powered paper recycling units, donated by Pratt Industries, a national leader in the recycling and packaging industry, are now collecting paper recyclables at highly trafficked intersections in Lower Manhattan. Downtown Alliance President Elizabeth H. Berger along with Pratt Industries Recycling Division President Myles Cohen, announced the partnership with the unveiling of one of the high-tech recycling units at 4 New York Plaza in Lower Manhattan, along with leading political leaders, city officials and business executives.

Other guests included the Mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability Director Sergej Mahnovski, Sanitation Department Commissioner John J. Doherty, Sanitation Deputy Commissioner for Recycling Ron Gonen, Staten Island Borough President James Molinaro, Council Member Margaret Chin, City Council Sanitation Committee Chair Letitia James. Rick Gaudette of BigBelly Solar, whose company manufactured the units, was also present.

“With 60,000 residents, 310,000 workers and 11 million annual tourists, these high-tech recycling units will go a long way in keeping our streets cleaner and our environment greener,” said Downtown Alliance President Elizabeth H. Berger. “Thank you to Pratt Industries and the Bloomberg Administration for their partnership in bringing state of the art recycling technology to Lower Manhattan.”

Pratt Industries is a 100% recycled paper company and America’s 5th largest corrugated packaging manufacturer. It operates the only paper mill in New York City. It provided a grant to the Downtown Alliance to purchase 16 of the Big Belly solar paper recycling units to be placed in key high-traffic pedestrian locations in lower Manhattan.

"What is extremely unique about this program is that it enables access for recycling of paper instead of it getting thrown in with other trash, so it can be recycled more easily, right here in New York City at our 100% recycled paper mill," said Cohen. "Our New York City paper mill has been in continuous operation since 1997, and since its opening, has saved almost 90 million trees by using only recycled paper that would have might otherwise been sent to a landfill.”

In March of 2013 Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg announced an initiative to encourage public space recycling in New York City. In his State of the City address, Mayor Bloomberg renewed the Administration’s commitment to doubling the city’s recycling rate to 30 percent by 2017.

"The New York City Department of Sanitation has 25,000 litter baskets placed around the five boroughs to collect light street litter,” said Commissioner Doherty. “But we have also placed out more than 1,000 public space recycling bins to capture recyclables that previously would have been going to landfills. These new paper recycling bins donated by Pratt will help the city to reduce its waste and dramatically increase the amount of paper generated on our streets by pedestrians."

"Over the past 12 years, downtown Manhattan has experienced a reemergence as a vibrant commercial and residential community," said Sergej Mahnovski. "By year's end, our Administration will put 1,000 new recycling containers on streets in all five boroughs. Making recycling easier for New Yorkers will build on our work to make our entire system of solid waste management less polluting, more energy-efficient, and more sustainable, both economically and environmentally."

Borough President Molinaro said, “Pratt has been an outstanding community partner to Staten Island since they located here, and I am pleased to see them extend their reach to Manhattan, where these new recycling bins will encourage a cleaner, greener Lower Manhattan.”

“I am excited about this partnership between the Downtown Alliance and Pratt Industries that will make our city even greener,” said City Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn.  “The City Council, along with the Bloomberg administration, has worked hard to expand and overhaul the way we recycle here in New York City. If we all do our part, we can preserve – and dramatically improve – our environment. I thank Mayor Bloomberg, Deputy Mayor Holloway and the Downtown Alliance for their steadfast commitment to this cause.”

"It's remarkable when we can combine two of our city's most progressive priorities–harnessing sustainable energy and encouraging widespread recycling–to meet an everyday need to keep our streets clean,” said Council Member Margaret Chin. “Our sanitation capacities must evolve to meet the growing numbers of visitors to Lower Manhattan, and these 16 recycling units go a long way toward that goal.   I thank Downtown Alliance, Pratt Industries, and the Department of Sanitation for their dedication to a clean, environmentally-conscious Lower Manhattan."

BigBelly Solar paper recycling stations are solar power and are remotely monitored via wireless technology. Since their debut in October, Downtown Alliance Operations staff has reported that the BigBelly solar waste stations, which also compact refuse, significantly reduced the number of on-street bags of litter. These units, also equipped with electronic monitoring technology, save Downtown Alliance Sanitation workers trips by sending real-time email alerts when receptacles become full. Lower Manhattan generated 1,200 tons of waste in 2012. Affixed with maps of Lower Manhattan, 16 BigBelly Paper Recycling Stations will be paired with currently sited BigBelly litter units.


About Pratt Industries:  Pratt Industries is the 5th Largest Corrugated Packaging Company in the USA with 4000 green-collar workers and is the world's largest, privately-held 100% recycled paper and packaging company. Pratt operates an extensive Recycling Subsidiary to supply the most modern containerboard system in North America with 100% recycled paper. Our supply chain continues through a network of strategically-placed box factories and display facilities.