(BIVN) – The County of Hawaiʻi on Thursday announced that it will be enhancing recycling infrastructure using a $1.5 million grant from the EPA. The federal funds will support a reusable food ware and refillable bottle system in Hilo, officials say.
From the County of Hawaiʻi:
Mayor Mitch Roth is pleased to announce that Hawaiʻi County has secured a substantial $1,522,130 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as part of President Biden’s “Investing in America” initiative. This funding is dedicated to enhancing recycling infrastructure and waste management systems in Hawaiʻi County, specifically for a city-scale reusable food ware and refillable bottle system in Hilo.
“We’re deeply grateful for the EPA’s decision to support our proposal to establish a groundbreaking city-wide reusable food ware and refillable bottle system in Hilo,” said Mayor Mitch Roth. “This initiative is all about building the necessary infrastructure for our residents to continue forging a greener and more resilient Hawaiʻi Island, where every citizen actively contributes to the preservation of our environment and sustainability of our island home.”
The award will be officially accepted by the Hawaiʻi County Department of Environmental Management. These funds will support developing and implementing the reusable food ware and refillable bottle system. The project will encompass the acquisition of reuse collection bins, transport vehicles, crates, a dishwashing machine, infrastructure installation, QR code scanners, and a technology platform for efficient asset tracking and management.
The EPA’s selection of Hawaiʻi County as a grant recipient is part of the Solid Waste Infrastructure for Recycling (SWIFR) program, totaling over $73 million distributed to 25 communities nationwide. Additionally, an allocation of approximately $32 million is available for states and territories to enhance solid waste management planning, data collection, and plan execution. These grants align seamlessly with the EPA’s National Recycling Strategy, promoting a circular economy by extending the lifespan of materials, products, and services.