Recycle like an expert

JILL SNYDER
Visitor Engagement Manager

Everyday over 5,000 tons of wasted materials are brought to the Solid Waste Authority landfill. Most of that material does not need to be there since it could be recycled or composted. Many of the parks have a recycling dumpster in the maintenance area for park use, and we now have public recycling dumpsters in four parks — Homestead, Scioto Grove, Sharon Woods and Three Creeks! To make the most of recycling efforts in the parks, it is important to make sure we are only putting the right things in the bins. What is acceptable can change over time and it is not based on just having the recycling symbol on the items. Glass, aluminum and paper are some of the easiest items to recycle, while plastics are one of the most confusing to differentiate.

For example:

  • Can you recycle a red solo cup? NO
  • Can you recycle a clear, beverage cup from McDonald’s? YES
  • Can you recycle a plastic strawberry container? NO
  • Can you recycle a yogurt cup? YES

The best advice for plastics is — if it has a neck and shoulders, it can be recycled. Lids must be left on the bottles to be recycled. Yogurt containers are one of the exceptions.

You can recycle the following items:

  • Paper and cardboard (break down and flatten)
  • Plastic bottles, jugs, tubs and cups (lids left on)
  • Glass bottles and jars
  • Metal cans and cups
  • Cartons

Here are a few common mistakes made in our maintenance shops when recycling:

  • Paper towels are not recyclable. The paper is too low grade, so don’t toss napkins or paper towels into the recycling bin.
  • Food containers and plastic utensils are not recyclable, including greasy pizza boxes.
  • Another common mistake is bagging recycling items. Trash bags can’t go into the recycling bin. Recyclables must be loose, so dump the contents of the bags into the recycling dumpster and trash the bag itself.

Seventy-six percent of waste going to the landfill could be diverted by recycling and composting, so be sure to recycle right in Metro Parks!

4 thoughts on “Recycle like an expert

  1. maybe a campaign to the manufactures of those products that cannot be recycled/composted would be something the public could help with. so that the source is more helpful

  2. Do you know of any place to recycle medical waste. I am an insulin dependent diabetic and have quite a few miscellaneous plastic and plastic mix items that I have no place to safely deposit/recycl?. I wonder if there are any drop-off locations for medical “waste”.

    Thanks for any help or guidance you may be able to provide

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