The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s Division of Waste & Hazardous Substances is offering another opportunity under the Universal Recycling Grants and Low Interest Loan Program to help Delaware organizations support the state’s municipal solid waste diversion goal of 60% diversion of MSW by Jan. 1, 2020.

The most recent statistics from 2017 place Delaware at a 43.1% diversion rate, compared to the National Diversion Rate, which stands at 34.7% as of 2015.

“Statistics show that Delaware is already a national leader in recycling, but we know we still have room to grow under the Universal Recycling law, which guarantees access for recycling to all residents of the First State whether at home, work, school, or play,” said DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin. “The goal of this grant program is to help organizations within Delaware increase diversion to meet and exceed our statewide goals. We encourage collaborative and creative solutions to help Delaware raise the bar and keep recycling moving in the right direction.”

DNREC, in collaboration with the Recycling Public Advisory Council, is offering the following opportunities:

— Open/Competitive Programs, total funding: $210,000: This category focuses on projects that promote five key areas identified by RPAC: leveraging data to increase recycling; identifying new or existing markets to accept Delaware’s diverted materials; identifying and measuring ways to educate and encourage recycling or waste reduction behavior change; establishing recycling and/or waste reduction programs within a school, district or university; and establishing programs to support municipal or county-led waste diversion initiatives. In this category Projects that support the goals outlined in 7 Del. Code Section 6055 will be considered even if they fall outside of the above parameters.

— Food Waste Reduction Initiatives Program, total funding: $100,000: Projects within this category must be directed at ways to help the food service/restaurant industry reduce the amount of food waste going to Delaware landfills.

— School Field Trip Program, total funding: $80,000: Funding for school bus companies to take students/classes from a single grade level from every school in Delaware to the Delaware Solid Waste Authority Education Center located in New Castle. This program is open to any public or private school in Delaware.

Application forms and the guidance document are available at bit.ly/30BKQW5 and recycling.delaware.gov. Applicants are advised to read the guidance document prior to submitting their applications. Applications will be due to DNREC by the close of business July 12. Due to the limited amount of funding, partial grants might be awarded based on RPAC’s discretion. RPAC and DNREC emphasize that applicants for grants and low-interest loans do not need to be recycling experts to put forward a recycling grant proposal. DNREC highly encourages creative solutions and collaboration amongst applicants.

For more, call 739-9403 or email recycle@delaware.gov.