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Recycling
Old 01-12-2020, 05:57 AM
  #1

I live in a rural area, our trash collector does not collect recycling. My county has no recycling. The nearest county won't accept recycling from anyone other than that county's residents (and they check). Another bordering county had drop off recycling. That's where I've taken mine for the last 2 years.

I found out yesterday that they are now limiting what they'll accept. Only plastics # 1, 2 and 3. Steel and pop cans. Flattened cardboard. BUT no newspaper. No glass. No plastics other than those mentioned.

I'm disappointed, but I heard that most of what they ended up with had to go into the landfill anyway. I wish there was a better way that we, as a society, could work this out.


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Old 01-12-2020, 06:02 AM
  #2

My town had to change their policy because other countries aren’t accepting our recycling. We recycle plastics labeled 1 and 2, metal cans, cardboard and paper. I try not to buy items in packaging that can’t be recycled, but it’s difficult to find what I need sometimes.

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Old 01-12-2020, 06:21 AM
  #3

Our city stopped recycling last year too. For us it was because people werenít doing it rightóputting things in the recycle bin that couldnít be recycled. It got so bad the city just stopped collecting it and put everything in the trash.
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I know
Old 01-12-2020, 06:22 AM
  #4

I had read about the "recycling problem" and have been trying to change the way I buy things.

* I joined a Coop where I can bring my own containers for things like laundry detergent, dish soap, syrup, oil and all kinds of beans, grains, nuts, spices, "butters" etc.
*I had been bringing my own plastic bags to the grocery store to buy the bulk produce. My brother and SIL just gave me mesh bags for this purpose and I love them. I buy very little produce that is packaged. (But why are organic tomatoes packaged and regular tomatoes are not?) That means no blueberries or strawberries until summer.
* During the summer and fall, I belong to a CSA, so produce is unpackaged.

However, when I look at what I am placing on the conveyor, my cart is still full of packaged items. And.. our local chain is doing away with plastic bags at the checkout. But they will still have plastic bags in the grocery department, will still sell a lot of produce that is packaged in plastic. There will still be far to many clamshells in circulation.

I agree that we as a society should be making some drastic changes.
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My community does not provide
Old 01-12-2020, 06:33 AM
  #5

any trash collection. We must contract a trash disposal company to collect our trash and our recyclable items. Our township also has a recycle center. Some recycled items are free to recycle as long as you show your address. There is a fee for recycling electronics etc. Fortunately, they allow vets to recycle one or two items each year for free.

I wish we had the full recycle system like my DS has in Mass. They collect vegetable scraps etc. in a bucket that you place on the curb. They weigh it, and then they return the same weight in compost. I would LOVE that instead of having the compost pile with the added work in the back or our yard.

Fun fact: We pick apples every year. In the orchards open to the public they can not pick up the apples on the ground to make cider or anything else. When I about it the worker told me they wouldn't anyway as they use these windfall apples to make compost. He claims they make the most profit from that as it is the most expensive and sought after compost. Who knew?


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Old 01-12-2020, 07:15 AM
  #6

Our government is going to have to regulate packaging for anything good to happen in this arena. As communities, we have very little control over the amount of packaging that items have without making major changes to what we do (like joining a co-op, or growing all of our own food and giving up a consumer lifestyle).
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Recycling
Old 01-12-2020, 07:20 AM
  #7

I think everything has become far too disposable. I really wish that we would go back to the way things were before —- when things were made to last, and one-time use items were not the norm. I hate the fact that cases of plastic water bottles are still sold. I hate the wastefulness of our society.

I recycle everything I possibly can, but I almost feel like it’s a pointless drop in the bucket when I see how few people bother to. I used to have a neighbor who ran a business from her home and often received large boxes of products. Our garbage pick-up days were on Tuesdays and Fridays but the recycling truck came only once a week, on Fridays. One Monday evening my neighbor was piling lots of large cardboard boxes at her curb. I casually mentioned something about hanging on to them a few days until Friday recycling pick-up. But she replied that she was tired of having them in her garage and just wanted them out as soon as possible and didn’t want to wait until Friday. She’d had those stupid boxes hanging around her garage for who knows how long, and she couldn’t wait 3 more days to recycle them!!! It irritated me so much!

In Germany, they are required to not only recycle, but to sort first. Everyone has different bins for the different categories, including trash, and are fined if they don’t. I wish it were that way here.

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I agree...
Old 01-12-2020, 07:53 AM
  #8

I am in a suburban area, but I am also reading that less and less is being accepted for recycling. We do have towns that recently enlisted a plastic bag ban. I admit to having mixed feelings about that. I always bring in my own bags to grocery stores and have for a long time. I have no problem with that. However, I do re-use what they consider single use plastic bags, and would like stores to provide biodegradable plastic bags instead of having the consumer foot the bill for having to pay for bags if they don't bring their own on top of the cost of their merchandise. The stores used to rebate consumers who brought their own bags between 2 and 5 cents a bag, but now the cost is on the consumer, as usual. I think the laws are well-intentioned and I hope they work to clean the environment, but I have my doubts. I also would like them to look at other areas like plastic water bottles and styrofoam, both of which are prevalent in many places. My community also doesn't insist on clear plastic garbage bags, and I have a neighbor who just tosses her newspapers and soda cans in the garbage due to pure laziness.
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Old 01-12-2020, 08:04 AM
  #9

When we moved to Georgia a few years ago, I was happy to discover that a common grocery chain here —Publix—has styrofoam recycling bins in front of their stores. They’re the middle man, as another company picks up the styrofoam for recycling, so I don’t know why the company doesn’t have collection sites anywhere else; but I’m not complaining. My recycling-conscious sister even sent a bunch of styrofoam home with me when I was heading home (driving) from visiting her in Texas recently.
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Old 01-12-2020, 08:07 AM
  #10

That is terrific! I have not noticed any recycling bins for styrofoam in my area, but I will certainly look for them. Good for Publix for initiating that!


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Old 01-12-2020, 08:25 AM
  #11

I feel grateful to live in a community that has expanded its recycling efforts in the last few years. I can even recycle things like TVs and AC units during the week, instead of waiting for special events.

But I know that since China and other countries have stopped accepting our recycling, there are fewer and fewer places to send it. I don't understand how it's not profitable to recycle -- how is it more expensive than manufacturing something new??

I belong to a co-op and am grateful for that as well. No one bats an eye if you bring in your own container for spices or laundry detergent. I think this will have to be the future. Though, ironically, it's how things were done in the past!
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Recycling
Old 01-12-2020, 08:44 AM
  #12

Our town also does not provide any garbage pickup. You can contract with a private contractor (pricy) or bring it to the dump yourself. Our dump provides all the recycling including electronics. It is $1.00 per bag of actual garbage. They also provide a small recycling library filled with books and magazines. Our town has also banned plastic bags and straws. I guess we are pretty lucky too. We spend very little on garbage.
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Old 01-12-2020, 09:32 AM
  #13

Recycling is a worthwhile endeavor but the downside is that it makes people feel that it's okay to give no consideration to how many overpackaged products they purchase so long as they recycle. The fact is, as you all clearly know, that recycling doesn't accomplish much if you don't also try to reduce your consumption of overpackaged products AND if you aren't willing to spend a bit more for recycled products. I often feel as though recycling may be false environmentalism.

In theory, we have mandatory recycling where I live and recycling has recently become co-mingled. But all garbage and recycling is collected by automated trucks so I don't see how they can possibly enforce the "mandatory" part of it. Years ago, when I lived in rural Minnesota, we paid for garbage pick-up by the bag. Recycling was free but you had to sort it yourself and take it to a recycling center. Still, garbage pick-up was expensive enough that it provided an incentive for people to recycle and compost. I think they ultimately discontinued that system because it also provided an incentive for some people to burn paper, cardboard and plastic rather than recycling it.

These days I only need to take my recycling bin to the curb every 3 weeks or so and, in winter when I don't have to worry about pests and odors, my actual garbage bin goes up about once a month. But I pay as much as my neighbors who pile their garbage bins so full they won't close every single week.
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Disposable society
Old 01-12-2020, 10:19 AM
  #14

So often we don't refurbish items, we just toss them and buy new. It's not just groceries and every day supplies, it's large household appliances and furniture and everything! An appliance repairman recently came to my house to fix the still under warranty stove. He told me these days most appliances only have a shelf life of five to seven years. If they can't be recycled, they will take up a lot of space in a landfill some day. So sad.
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Old 01-12-2020, 11:11 AM
  #15

At my book club the other day someone was just talking about this. My HOA has recycling come every 2 weeks and trash come 1x per week. Apparently, in my city they're currently collecting recycling, but not even actually recycling it because they don't have enough employees to fill those jobs. She said people should continue to keep recycling to "stay in the habit" but that it's not actually being recycled right now. How absurd!
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Overpackaging
Old 01-12-2020, 12:22 PM
  #16

We do much of our food shopping at our indoor farmers market. NO packaging. We just pick it up and place in our bag. We also buy our eggs and any meat from a local farm. We recycle the egg cartons. I try very hard not to buy products that are over packaged. I will call the manufacturer if it is ridiculous. If everyone did this, it would help...
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Old 01-12-2020, 03:05 PM
  #17

We travel in our RV and it is very interesting to see which areas recycle and which donít. I have learned to be conscientious about the products I buy. We used to buy gallon water jugs and I found myself hauling them around for weeks, sometimes months, to find a place to recycle them. I finally figured out that Walmart carries the 5 gal. refillable jugs so now we donít worry about having to recycle water jugs.

We use our own coffee cups instead of the single use cups.

I buy powdered laundry detergent in cardboard, OJ and coffee in cardboard as well. It isnít always possible to recycle them but I hope it is better than using plastic.
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Old 01-12-2020, 03:41 PM
  #18

Our county has picked up our recycling for years, but recently imposed some of the same rules you mentioned, although they do still take newspaper.

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Old 01-13-2020, 10:46 AM
  #19

We put out a recycling can and regular garbage can every week provided by the city. We have loose trash pick up once a month for big items including branches tied up. We recycle #1-6 which is really good. Weird thing is they donít collect glass.
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Old 01-13-2020, 11:51 AM
  #20

My big thing is disposable diapers - I wish they would find a way to encourage more people to use cloth or to find a biodegradable way to make them. I don't know how many diaper a child would use during their diaper-wearing years, but I'm guess at least 3,000. That is a lot of diapers taking up space in a landfill. Not to mention, most people I know who use them wrap each up in a plastic bag to dispose of them.
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Old 01-13-2020, 11:56 AM
  #21

Quote:
My big thing is disposable diapers - I wish they would find a way to encourage more people to use cloth or to find a biodegradable way to make them. I don't know how many diaper a child would use during their diaper-wearing years, but I'm guess at least 3,000. That is a lot of diapers taking up space in a landfill. Not to mention, most people I know who use them wrap each up in a plastic bag to dispose of them.
I used cloth for this reason (and other irrelevant reasons). But...I used more water washing them and I live in a desert. Is that better? I really don't know.
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Old 01-13-2020, 07:06 PM
  #22

I'm seeing "poop better" ads now underneath this thread. I guess foot rests for pooping are the latest fad?

We have recycled for years . The city we live in now has inmates separating trash . DH and I do take large cardboard and styrofoam things to a recycle pick up area though. Years ago we lived in a town that had us sort trash items into different bins. It made us very aware of what was going into the landfill.
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