Recycling returns to some parts of St. Charles Parish

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 26, 2010



DRESTREHAN – Residents living on the east bank of St. Charles Parish now have a more environmentally friendly option for disposal of some of their trash with the return of a curbside recycling service.

Phoenix recycling, a firm out of New Orleans, began curbside pickup of recyclable materials this week in St. Rose, Destrehan and New Sarpy neighborhoods. Tuesday’s inaugural run marked the first time residents of the parish have enjoyed regular curbside recycling pickup since 2005, when the parish suspended its own program so that trash crews could concentrate on clearing debris from Hurricane Katrina.

“We’ve actually been trying to bring the service to St. Charles Parish since 2008, when several residents contacted us and expressed interest,” said David McDonough, owner of Phoenix Recycling. “At that time we didn’t have the trucks or the manpower to reach into this area. It’s good to see that we can finally get in here and offer this option.”

For a regular monthly fee between $10 and $15, recycling crews will collect paper, cardboard, various plastic containers (# 1-7), and metal cans every other week. McDonough said the crews will not accept Styrofoam, plastic bags or glass.

“There is just no demand for glass right now in this area, or many other areas nationwide,” he said. “Even though there are several alternate uses, there just aren’t many industrial consumers looking for recycled glass.”

According to parish officials, prior to Hurricane Katrina about 30 percent of the households participated in the parish’s curbside recycling service. Each participant was charged $1.77 a month on their water bills and the parish provided a $330,000 subsidy.

After the storm, when waste haulers began just focusing on debris removal, the recycling program has halted for lack of manpower. Despite requests from several residents across the parish, St. Charles parish officials have been reluctant to bring it back because of the low participation rate. The parish now offers a bi-monthly drop-off program for recyclable materials.

McDonough said the Phoenix service offers residents a more convenient way to dispose of recyclables since all they need to do is collect them, contain them and drop them at the curb.

“We cover a lot of ground in a day,” McDonough said. “If everyone brought their own material to a drop off, there would be a lot of gas burned – gas that we could have saved by taking the trip for them.”

McDonough said Tuesday’s first run included about 36 homes throughout the coverage area. He said demand often increases once people realize what the service offers. He also added that the company will accept requests for expansion from people outside the coverage area.

“People on the west bank of the parish and people in say St. John Parish are free to contact to express interest in the curbside service,” McDonough said. “The more interest we receive, the more likely we are to expand into those areas.”

For more information on Phoenix Recycling, including service areas, schedules and more, visit www., or call 504-322-7551.