Upstate Counties see increase in trash amid pandemic

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ANDERSON COUNTY, SC (WSPA)– The Anderson County’s Solid Waste Department has seen an increase in trash since residents have been home more.

While there’s an increase of garbage at the waste sites, county crews are working to clear the curb. They hope it won’t have a major impact on anyone in the future. 

“We’re definitely seeing an influx. It’s as heavy as Christmas and more, for the last seven weeks,” said Greg Smith, Solid Waste Director for Anderson County. “I’ve never seen it like this in 23 years.”

They’re seeing the overflow at their 15 convenience centers across Anderson County.

“We did see an increase in our regular trash, but we’re also seeing a major increase in our furniture stuff,” Smith said. 

“Basically what we’ve seen in March…on regular house-hold trash is probably about a 4,000 ton increase. This past month of April was about 12,000 ton,” Smith said. 

They believe the incline is mostly due to home projects and people, like Calvin Poore, being at home. 

“Staying at home more and eating in more instead of eating out. I’d come like once a week, now I’m coming like twice a week,” Poore said. 

Oconee County is experiencing the uptick too. Debris from the recent tornado is climbing in their county. 

“Our land field is set-up to handle 90 to 150 tons a day, and since April 13th, we’ve averaged between 3 to 500 tons a day. And that’s our biggest impact that we’re seeing now,” said Swain Still, Director of Oconee County Solid Waste. 

Still said residential trash is not a problem. He also said commercial trash has gone down, since restaurants have been closed.  

However, in Anderson County, crews have pulled over 550 more hauls to their land fills recently. Now they’re trying to reduce that, to save you from paying increased solid waste fees. 

“Hopefully this year, our solid waste fees will stay the same. If things steady back out, then we should be okay. Our key things is, we want to keep our solid waste fee the same or less than if we can,” Smith said. 

That’s why they’re purchasing more crushers and compactors. Since our trash is needed, Poore said he’s okay either way.  

“Whatever we have to do, I’m fine,” Poore added. 

Anderson County Solid Waste said remembering to recycle your products will help with the influx. 

If you’re dumping at the sites, they said all trash in your trucks and trailers, must be covered and secured. Smith said it’s required and a part of the state law and the Anderson County ordinance. 

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