Rockland officials and ecomaine, the member-owned, nonprofit recycling and waste-to-energy operation that serves the city, are touting residents’ enthusiasm and aptitude for recycling after the citywide launch of single-sort recycling in June. The single-sort recycling program allows Rockland residents to collect paper, cardboard, metal cans, glass bottles and jars, and hard plastic containers #1 through #7 in one container for recycling.

A July 24 press release from ecomaine reports first deliveries of single-sort recycling in Rockland diverted more than 48 tons of recyclables from landfills. Notably, the city’s rate of contamination — materials that are placed in the recycling bins but are not recyclable — has averaged just 3 percent.

Rockland Director of Public Services Dave St. Laurent is quoted in the release, saying that residents requested more than 400 blue recycling bins at the start of the program. “I’m extremely proud of the fact that we’ve kept most of the contamination out of our stream, which helps save the city greatly on contamination fees.”

Matt Grondin, ecomaine communications manager, cited education efforts for city staff and residents, in-person and online, as reasons for Rockland’s response.

For more information about sorting recyclables from trash, visit ecomaine’s website at ecomaine.org. Ecomaine has full-time education staff who can provide presentations and programs to residents and students in Rockland at no cost, to help support proper waste management.