What Can Be Recycled

I had thought that recycling was a fairly straight-forward proposition. Instead of tossing it in landfill, we’ll rinse it out, bang the dents out and it’ll be good to go. I so love the idea that it’s that simple, that I’d like to pretend that it’s that simple. But no—it’s not even remotely simple. HoWEVer It CAN Be Easily Learned.

What can go in the blue bin behind your house or be dropped at a local recycling center? That depends entirely on the Materials Recycling Facility (MRF) that is sorting your recycling. Call your local MRF and get a list of the materials that they take. A general guideline:

Recycle This
Junk Mail
Office & School Paper (all colors)
Boxboard (cereal boxes)
Aluminum Can/Foil and Pie Pans
Tin & Steel Cans (rinsed)
Plastic Milk Jugs, Juice Cartons
Plastic Bottles, Jars and Tubs
Plastic Containers (#1 – #7 if accepted by your MRF)
Phone Books/Paperbacks
Envelopes (including window envelopes)
Glass Bottles and Jars (all colors, labels ok)
Please remove caps from plastic bottles
Note: Some MRFs don’t take shredded paper. Check first.

Don’t Recycle This
Do They Take Those

Almost all of this stuff can be recycled, (just not in your curbside bin,) and if it can’t be recycled it can usually be donated, which is just as good or better. We will provide links as we get them.

Plastic Bags – Grocery bags can usually be returned to the store for recycling.
Light Bulbs
Dinnerware or Ceramics
Soiled or Dirty Containers
Food Waste
Used Paper Plates/Towels/Napkins –  Depends on the fiber, but some paper towels are compostable!
Motor Oil
Hazardous Chemical Containers
Hazardous Chemicals
Window Glass
Styrofoam Containers/Peanuts – A*rG!!@H. I’ve only been able to find resources for commercial services. I’ll keep at it.
Hard Cover BooksOr Donate
Dirt, Wood, Grass/Yard Waste
Construction Materials
Wrapping Paper – This is complicated, check it out. Click link, scroll down

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