Cool Hunting Video: Sunset Park Material Recovery Facility

A peep inside NYC's municipal recycling reveals the vastly complex task of material recovery and reuse

New Yorkers have been required to recycle for over 25 years. While it’s part of everyday life, what happens after the bags are loaded into a truck largely remains a mystery. We recently spent the day in the Sunset Park neighborhood of Brooklyn to take a look at the newly opened Sims Municipal Recycling facility that focuses on material recovery. Just one step in the recycling process, this facility sorts recyclable materials from all five boroughs of New York City. The facility—which itself is made almost entirely of recycled steel—uses the most state-of-the-art technology to process the bulk of the almost 900 tons of material delivered there per day. We got some valuable insights into how that giant load of stuff is sorted and prepared to become future products. One of the secrets: high-tech cameras that scan every single object on the conveyor belt.