Plastic foam waste collection begins in Algonquin Township

Residents of several communities in Kane, Lake and McHenry counties again will have a place to dispose of their plastic foam waste.

In July 2016, several towns, including Algonquin and Barrington, suspended collection programs for plastic foam, of which Styrofoam is a brand, due to a decline in demand for the recycled material.

The Environmental Defenders of McHenry County has reopened plastic foam waste collection in partnership with the Algonquin Township Highway Department. Collection began Tuesday at the highway department offices, 3702 Route 14 in Crystal Lake. Hours are 6:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays.

Environmental Defenders already was accepting clean plastic foam products with no food residue, expanded polystyrene and packing peanuts at its monthly recycling drives. A new partnership with U-Haul of Crystal Lake allows the agency to transfer plastic foam waste from collection sites to a 53-foot trailer at an Elgin warehouse.

Dart Container Corp., a manufacturer of plastic foam products, will then haul the materials by truck to its facility in Wisconsin where it will be upcycled, said Ken Santowski, owner of Chicago Logistic Service trucking company in Elgin where the collection trailer will be parked.