Recycle Right: Place your glass in the trash.
Effective October 1, 2019 we no longer accept glass in your curbside recycling cart(s). Here’s why:
When consumer recycling efforts began, providers required customers to sort their plastics, cardboard and glass in separate bins, known as multistream collection. This approach simplified recycling processing but was too difficult for everyday consumers to manage.
To encourage more consumers to recycle, the industry shifted to the convenience of a single-bin, or single-stream process. Consumers put all of their recyclables in a single bin, and the sorting is handled by providers at material recovery facilities (MRFs).
But glass creates all kinds of issues in single-stream recycling because:
- IT’S FRAGILE - glass breaks easily, so much of what ends up at our MRFs isn’t in good enough condition to be reused.
- IT’S HEAVY - there are very few glass processing centers in the U.S., and transporting glass from our MRFs to glass recyclers is costly and increases emissions.
- IT CONTAMINATES - it is nearly impossible to keep tiny glass fragments from contaminating paper and other recyclables, as well as damaging processing equipment. Plus, most of the glass contains food and other particles that make it more difficult to process. China stopped buying most of America’s recyclables, mainly due to contamination.
Combined with the fact that recycling is becoming more expensive for local governments, these factors mean the costs of accepting glass outweigh the benefits. Since we no longer collect glass in your curbside bin, here’s how you can reduce and reuse it:
- Recycle light bulbs at most hardware and home improvement stores
- Repurpose glass containers as vases or to store dry goods
- Buy in bulk to minimize the amount of glass you’re purchasing
Contact Waste Management at www.WM.com or 407-605-3892