It seems everyone has gone green or is getting there soon, but you could be botching your recycling efforts and not even know it. Plastic grocery bags are a little-known misstep people often make in curbside recycling programs. They not only impact recycling facilities financially, but more importantly, they create a safety issue for employees.
When plastic bags are mixed with acceptable recyclable materials, the bags entwine in the equipment. Employees sort recyclables by hand and are in direct contact with every piece of material delivered to our recovery facilities. This causes unsafe conditions and downtime to clear the equipment.
Plastic bags also contaminate and lower the value of recyclable materials when they are mixed.
The good news is, plastic bags can be recycled with the right collection system and processing equipment. Consider taking them to grocery stores, co-ops and retailers that accept clean, dry plastic bags for recycling. Look for specially designated bins usually located at the entrance of the store.
Each year, millions of dollars are spent removing items that shouldn’t be in the recycling stream. You can help stop the clog and create new materials at the same time. Plastic bags and wraps can be recycled into plastic lumber that is used to make park benches, backyard decks and fences – even playground equipment!*
This one small effort can make a big impact on recycling efforts. Thank you for keeping bags out of the bin!
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP) is the world’s largest collection of floating trash.* While much of the contamination comes from countries that don’t have sound solid waste strategies, there is much more we can do at home, not just on Earth Day but every day.
One of the biggest contributors to the GPGP is plastic, and only 7 percent of plastic in the U.S. is recycled. Here’s a sampling of what your plastics and papers become:
#1 plastics (water bottles and soft drink bottles) make fabric and carpets.
#2 plastics (milk jugs and determent bottles) make decking, lumber, fencing and new bottles.
Papers make copy paper, greeting cards, tissue, paper towels and more.
aseptic boxes and paper cartons: soup, milk, broth, and orange juice
recycled papers (not shredded)
aluminum cans (not crushed)
glass jars and bottles (no window glass)
It’s important not only to recycle, but to recycle the RIGHT way. Here are four common mistakes that impede the recycling process:
Recyclables in Plastic Bags:When plastic bags are mixed with acceptable recyclable materials, the bags entwine in the machinery and cause downtime to clear the equipment. Because our employees sort by hand, this also creates a safety issue.
Plastic Toys and Furniture: Plastic toys and furniture are made of different grades of plastic, which all have different melt points. This contaminates the melting process and impairs the equipment. Instead, give your old toys and furniture new love and donate them. You can also take them to your local Transfer Facility to recycle for free. Check your facility page for a location near you.
Shredded Paper: Shredding paper reduces its size so dramatically that it ends up in the wrong place at recycling facilities. Once it is mixed with glass or residue, it cannot be recovered for recycling. Contact a mobile document destruction service that will take it to their warehouse and bale it for recycling.
Pizza Boxes: This is one of the most common recycling mistakes. Although pizza boxes are made of cardboard, the grease from the pizza contaminates the raw material. To ensure your leftovers don’t end up in the Pacific, tear off the untarnished parts for recycling.
Every time you recycle, it counts. Thank you for making a difference!
Cans of cola and other aluminum or tin beverage and food containers are widely accepted at Advanced Disposal and third party recycling facilities. Be sure to rinse out the items and place in your bin or cart. Leftover food residue could contaminate an entire load of items making everything unrecyclable, so be sure to keep it clean.
While most greeting cards can be recycled, consider repurposing the ones that cannot. Upcycle cards by making paper crafts with them such as cutting out the designs to use them as gift tags or ornaments for next year’s holiday season.
Strings of popcorn and even tinsel garland are considered household waste. Place these items in your garbage containers for disposal. Other decorations like glass baubles are not recyclable as well. If any of your glass baubles break, carefully wrap and dispose in your trash bin. Plastic baubles are usually made from types of plastics that are likely to be covered with glitter which would negatively impact the recycling process as well. … read more
Your moving day is right around the corner, and you have to start the moving process: sorting through everything, deciding what to keep,having a yard sale and of course, packing. Reducing the amount of waste you create in the process can help make moving easier. Here are a few tips on reducing moving waste: … read more
At the dawn of the personal computer came the term, “paperless office.” This ideal was first predicted in a 1975 Businessweek article. Decades later, we may have progressed slightly closer to this office model, but most companies still rely heavily on paper use to meet the needs of clients and regulatory or legal requirements. With a more widespread use of tablets and mobile devices, we could see a major shift to a society that is less paper dependent.
Here are some practical ways to reduce the amount of paper currently used in your organization, as well as some easy ways to keep employees involved in the process: … read more
In an effort to make your workplace go green, first you will have to know exactly what you are throwing away. It is estimated that 90 percent of waste in the workplace can be recycled, and knowing what it is that you can recycle in your business can help kick start a more efficient office recycling program. … read more
We believe that Earth Day goes beyond a single day, so let’s dream! People around the globe are finding new means to keep our planet beautiful by recycling what would otherwise end up in a landfill in practical, but also, very extreme ways. So, here is your chance to join the fun and turn green into cha-ching!
You have two weeks to post the best image of your most Extreme Recycling project to our Facebook page. A winner will be chosen on May 6, 2015 to win a $500 gift card. Just like us on Facebook and post your most creative recycling! Need some inspiration? From stunning art installations and housing options, to practical ways to make your garden beautiful, here are some extreme ideas for making trash into treasure!
Earth Day provides the perfect platform for starting a new recycling routine with family, friends and coworkers. Advanced Disposal wants you to Make Your Mother Proud with these everyday recycling tips!
It’s important to pay attention to what can and can’t be recycled, so that the recycling process is fast and safe. Cardboard, paper, food boxes, mail, beverage cans, food cans, jars, jugs and plastic bottles are good to recycle. Glass bottles depend on your location, though — so check to make sure you’re recycling right!
Did you know that these commonly recycled items cannot be recycled at your curb? Plastic grocery bags, take out boxes, Styrofoam, paper coffee cups, shredded paper, pizza boxes, household glass and more can be found on this list. See the full list of items and learn more about recycling right. … read more
Advanced Disposal, an environmental services company, has a new online resource to help everyone recycle right on Earth Day and every day. AdvancedDisposal.com/RecycleRight includes bright, informative graphics to easily show what can and cannot be recycled along with common recycling myths.
On Wednesday, April 22, more than a billion people worldwide will take action for Earth Day. Recycling remains one of the best ways to protect natural resources and preserve the environment, but the business of recycling is facing challenges due to significant changes in the recyclables export market and stricter quality standards. As a result, recyclers, like Advanced Disposal, have had to add extra staff and machinery to improve the sorting quality of incoming material, which has raised the cost of recycling. … read more
The holiday season brings joy and good cheer to many but in turn, also generates a lot of waste. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, it is estimated that between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, household waste increases by 25 percent. In the U.S., 4 million tons of waste is generated by gift wrap and shopping bags alone. Give back to Mother Earth this season and incorporate some waste reducing ideas to help keep the holidays happy for the environment too!
Keeping the Tree Green
Many residents have the option to dispose of their Christmas tree at the curb as part of their curbside garbage or yard waste collection. Often, trees can be recycled. Check with your local services provider on tree collection guidelines. If you are an Advanced Disposal customer, please visit your local Advanced Disposal facility page and check your garbage guidelines. … read more
You are leaving Advanced Disposal's website. Links are provided as a public service and are for informational purposes only. No endorsement is made or implied. Clicking on "Continue" will take you to a website that is outside the control of Advanced Disposal. You are solely responsible for your interactions with such websites.