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GreenStep City Best Practices Resilient Economic & Community Development

Green Business Development
no. 25

Expand a greener, more resilient business sector.
  Best Practice Action 4      [ 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 ]       [all actions]

Strengthen value-added businesses utilizing local "waste" material.

  • The MPCA's recycling market development program helps start-up and expanding businesses in Minnesota develop uses for recycled materials by offering technical, financial, and marketing assistance.
  • See, for example, Minneapolis-based Wood from the Hood. Other examples are Hutchinson's creation and spin-off of a compost business, reuse of deconstruction and landscaping materials, manufacturing using recycled-content material as a feedstock, companies that sell shredded wood for compost, use recycled or composted materials for roadways and right-of-ways, consignment or reuse stores for furniture, clothing, appliances or building materials.
Report businesses that reuse, remanufacture, recycle and compost local material and arbitrage surplus capacity of existing service/product businesses. Report under action 22.4 efforts to publicize, promote and use reuse/repair/rental businesses, and report under action 12.6 bike/car sharing.
City BR&E (business retention and expansion) efforts explicitly assist value-added businesses.
Provide explicit incentives such as loans/grants to such businesses.

Elk River

Date action report first entered:   11/25/2010

Implementation details:
The Economic Development division conducts business retention and expansion visits with Supermats, a company that creates mats out of recycled tires. In addition, the City partners with Great River Energy to use their refuse-derived fuel facility for all residential and municipal waste. GRE is also a partner on the Energy City Commission.

For more information contact:
Amanda Bednar (City staff)   |   ABednar@ElkRiverMN.gov   |   763-635-1068

View All Elk River Actions

Golden Valley

Date action report first entered:   06/27/2017
Date of last report update:   06/27/2017
Year action initially completed:   2013
Action completed after joining GreenStep?   No

Implementation details:
The City annually hosts Mighty Tidy Day to provide residents with a monitored site to dispose of items that cannot be donated. To put on this event, the City contracts with several local, value-added businesses including Shred-N-Go, Tech Dump, and Better Futures. The City regularly contracts with companies that use recycled materials in street re-construction projects. The City has permitted development projects that recycled asphalt, concrete, and other building materials for reuse on their site. Woody organic material and yard waste collected by the Public Works Department is taken to the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community Recycling Facility that turns this waste into compost and compost blends for retail and wholesale purchase.

Descriptive links: https://shakopeedakota.org/enterprises/organics-recycling-facility/

For more information contact:
Marc Nevinksi (City staff)   |   mnevinski@goldenvalleymn.gov   |   763-593-8008

Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community

View All Golden Valley Actions

Apple Valley

Date action report first entered:   03/21/2012

Implementation details:
For many cement related projects, such as curb and gutter,the city has contracted with Fischer Sand and Aggregate, Cemstone, and Aggregate Industries, all of which utilize local recycled concrete.

For more information contact:
Charless Grawe (City staff)   |   CGrawe@ci.apple-valley.mn.us   |   952-953-2508

View All Apple Valley Actions


Date action report first entered:   09/04/2015
Date of last report update:   09/04/2015

Implementation details:
For many cement related projects, such as curb and gutter, sidewalks and trails, the city utilizes Arlington's Cemstone Products Company, which utilizes local recycled concrete.

For more information contact:
Tony Voigt (City staff)   |   tvoigt@arlingtonmn.com   |   507-964-2378

View All Arlington Actions

Cottage Grove

Date action report first entered:   01/31/2014

Implementation details:
Cottage Grove Public Works brings all branches, brush and yard waste accumulated to the locally run compost site where the items are then used as mulch, compost, black soil etc.

For more information contact:
Ryan Burfeind (City staff)   |   rburfeind@cottage-grove.org   |   651-458-2899

View All Cottage Grove Actions


Date action report first entered:   01/11/2011

Implementation details:
Gerten's Greenhouse and Ecosite is in Eagan, providing a business that provides landscaping materials resulting from recycled composted materials

For more information contact:
Eric MAcbeth (City staff)   |   emacbeth@cityofeagan.com   |   651/675-5330

View All Eagan Actions


Date action report first entered:   01/12/2012

Implementation details:
Complete: St. Paul District Energy picks up and chips the wood from the Edina brush dump at Braemar and hauls it to St. Paul District Energy plant at a cost to Edina far less than hauling the brush to a brush dump in Hastings, as was previously done. The chips are used to fuel St. Pauls District Energy plant. The brush in the city brush dump comes from municipal waste as well as including residential buckthorn, which residents are allowed to bring during the last two weekends of October. Residents must show an ID and can only come during approved hours.

For more information contact:
Luther Overholt (City staff)   |   Loverholt@CI.Edina.MN.US   |   952-826-0308

View All Edina Actions

Fergus Falls

Date action report first entered:   01/14/2016
Date of last report update:   01/14/2016

Implementation details:
Otter Tail County has a materials exchange program that is using Fergus Falls businesses to exchange unwanted/wanted goods.

For more information contact:
Len Taylor (City staff)   |   len.taylor@ci.fergus-falls.mn.us   |   218-332-5418

View All Fergus Falls Actions


Date action report first entered:   04/22/2013
Date of last report update:   05/01/2015

Implementation details:
For cleanup events, the city partners with Re-cycle, a group of bike coops in the metro area to recycle and recover all bikes and parts from bikes. To date Re-cycle has collected over 301 bikes at the event with a total weight of over 7,450 lbs.

For more information contact:
Shann Finwall (City staff)   |   shann.finwall@maplewoodmn.gov   |   651-249-2304

View All Maplewood Actions


Date action report first entered:   01/19/2018
Date of last report update:   01/19/2018
Year action initially completed:   1995
Action completed after joining GreenStep?   No

Implementation details:
The city’s brush and yard waste drop-off is available for residents, city crews, and the city’s contractors to bring in material. The city has an agreement in place with Minnesota Topsoil to remove the collected material from the city’s site. The leaves and yard waste are trucked to Minnesota Topsoil’s site to be composted. The trees and brush are ground at the drop-off site. A portion of the resulting mulch is left on site and is made available to Minnetonka residents for use on their properties for free, and the material is also used by city staff for landscaping. The remainder of the mulch is hauled away to be further processed and sold in the retail market.

Descriptive links: https://eminnetonka.com/in-your-home/leaves-brush-and-more

For more information contact:
Drew Ingvalson (City staff)   |   dingvalson@eminnetonka.com   |   952-939-8293

View All Minnetonka Actions

Red Wing

Date action report first entered:   01/30/2013

Implementation details:
We recycle metal at Hove Metals, just down the street from Red Wing Public Works. St. Paul heating district takes ground-up wood from the Incinerator.

For more information contact:
Paul Drotos (City staff)   |   paul.drotos@ci.red-wing.mn.us   |   651-410-6744

View All Red Wing Actions


Date action report first entered:   01/08/2019
Date of last report update:   01/09/2019
Year action initially completed:   1998
Action completed after joining GreenStep?   No

Implementation details:
Several businesses in Richfield reuse or recycle local material including: Organic Lawns by Lunseth which sources their compost locally from MN, WI, and IA, reusing turkey litter and corn gluten that would otherwise be thrown out; and Lakewinds Food Co-op, which has both front and back of store composting systems and donates unsold food daily to the VEAP food shelf. Additionally, Richfield has provided free wood chips to residents from trees removed or trimmed from city boulevards, and occasionally from private contractors as well. This program has existed every summer for over 20 years. The City also used 100% recycled asphalt in the Met sewer project and uses it in all patching work. It is contractor practice to use some amount of recycled asphalt in projects.

For more information contact:
Chris Link (City staff)   |   clink@richfieldmn.gov   |   6128619174

View All Richfield Actions


Date action report first entered:   02/03/2016
Date of last report update:   02/03/2016

Implementation details:
The leaves collected each fall from residents are composted at a city site and then made available for residents and also for landscaping on city property. In addition, wood collected is chipped at the same site and made available. Every fall, city equipment is used to vacuum all leaves along every curb in the city. This benefits businesses as well as residents. It keeps the front access to a business clean and helps with fall maintenance.

View All Roseville Actions

Saint Anthony

Date action report first entered:   03/22/2012

Implementation details:
The City of St. Anthony regularly contracts with companies that use recycled materials as the building base for new road ways. The City has been doing this since 1996 as part of their annual street reconstruction project. The City of St. Anthony Public Works Department routinely uses a local contractor to recycle its pavement and concrete materials for re-use. In addition to re-using the material, this reduces haul distances, fuel costs, and disposal fees for the City. The City delivers their forest products to local companies for recycling either as chips or other usable materials such as "Wood from the Hood" that was used for the 2011 GreenSteps awards.

View All Saint Anthony Actions

pending means a star rating has not yet been assigned to this city

greenstep advisor
Angie Bourdaghs, Small Business Environmental Assistance Program, MN Pollution Control Agency: 651/757-2176, angela.bourdaghs@state.mn.us, http://www.pca.state.mn.us/sbeap