10 Easy steps to help you recycle better

by Lorelei Poch

Environmental Editor

Before you think about how you can properly recycle, first think of any methods to reuse your materials!

1 Rinse, Recap, Recycle! Empty and rinse all containers before putting them into your recycling bins. If the cap can go back on, put it back on!

2Keep your recycling LOOSE inside your blue bins. Do not put it in a trash bag or else the workers at your local MRF cannot distinguish it from Landfill material.

3 Keep anything under 2” x 2” in the trash, it is too small to recycle with our current local technology (think a standard size Post-it Note. But in the case of a Post-it Note make sure you stick it to another piece of paper so it doesn’t get lost).

4Flatten all paper and cardboard items such as Amazon, cereal and pizza boxes (greasy boxes should be discarded or composted if possible).  

5Leave containers original shape (including milk jugs, all cans, water bottles and laundry detergent containers). DO NOT crush your cans!

6Clean and bundle your aluminum foil in a ball the size of or bigger than a baseball (make sure it is bigger than 2” x 2”).

7DO NOT recycle hazardous materials. These include propane tanks, RAID containers and spray paint containers. Not all aerosol containers are hazardous, for example whipped cream containers can be recycled.

8 Separate all materials. If you have a package from when you bought batteries, separate the plastic packaging from the paper, as it can only be sorted as one material.

9ONLY paper and containers belong in your blue bin

10 When in doubt, throw it out (Landfill).