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El Paso Inc.: City rolls out solar-powered bins Downtown

June 2, 2011

El Paso, TX - The City of El Paso began installing 73 BigBelly solar-powered trash compactors in Downtown last week.

The bins have been placed in Downtown’s Golden Horseshoe District. They will replace nearly 40 percent of the 200 green rod-iron trash bins in the area, according to a press release.

The city expects to save money by cutting collection trips. That reduces fuel costs and allows the City’s Environmental Services Department to reallocate its staffing resources to other environmental programs, according to the city.

The trash bins are about the same size as the city’s green rod-iron trash bins but have about five times more capacity because they use solar power to compact trash. They also have an electronic notification system that transmits a message when they are full.

The city recently completed a two-week pilot program that showed the collection frequency using the solar powered trash compactors was reduced to twice a week, compared to 14 times a week for a conventional bin.

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