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The issue of contamination in curbside recycling programs has grown in importance in recent years as its costs and safety impacts on recyclables processing at material recovery facilities (MRFs) become more widely recognized and better understood. During this session, O’Brien will present highlights from a report recently published by the SWANA Applied Research Foundation that identifies and addresses the key reasons why residents place contaminants in their recycling bins. A better understanding of what causes these recycling behaviors should enable recycling and sustainability program managers to develop and implement more effective anti-contamination programs that address the underlying reasons for curbside recycling contamination.

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