The Sims Sunset Park Material Recovery Facility at the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal (SBMT) is a state-of-the-art, 11-acre recycling facility along the waterfront. Opened in December 2013 the facility is the anchor of New York City’s curbside collection program, processing all plastic, metal, and glass collected by the Department of Sanitation. However, the location’s technological features extend beyond just the recycling process itself – the building and site incorporate many sustainable elements. Here are 10 fun facts we learned on a behind-the-scenes visit!
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Sunset Park Recycling Facility Tour
1. 25,000 Tons of Metal, Glass, Plastic and Paper are Received Every Month
Each month, the Sunset Park Material Recovery Facility processes 25,000 tons of residential metal, glass, and paper picked up by the New York City Department of Sanitation (commercial waste is not handled by the city). The metal, glass, and plastic (referred to as MGP) arrive completely mixed together. The materials first enter a place known as the tipping floor, shown above, where a front-end loader pushes the recyclables onto a conveyor belt. The conveyor feeds up into a “Liberator Shredder,” a slow-speed shredder with large gaps between the teeth that is used to open up the plastic bags that the recyclables come in. The recyclables fall through along with the ripped-open bags.