This seems so obvious and yet so many of us still don't do it. A quick scan of my neighborhood every trash pick-up day shows only two blue recycling bins (one of them my family's) placed in front of eight homes despite the fact that this service is paid for as part of our trash collection service. If you live in an area that doesn't offer curbside pickup of recyclables, contact your local waste management company to see if there's a drop-off place nearby. Most recycling centers accept glass, plastic, and aluminum containers, as well as newspapers. Some areas have special drop-off places for corrugated cardboard (very handy after a move, holiday, or birthday party), and local phone companies have periodic drop-off sites for old phone directories. Recycling is easy to do and takes very little time. If you're uncertain about how to recycle, follow this simple list of recycling do's and don'ts:
- Rinse containers (they don't have to be spotless, just rinsed out).
- Remove and discard lids (even plastic lids are not recyclable).
- There's no need to remove labels.
- Recycle plastic containers only if they have a number one or two stamped on the bottom of them (check with your town's recycling program to see if they accept higher numbers, but most do not).
- Discard broken glass (it contaminates the recycling process).
- Keep newspapers dry and pack them in a brown grocery bag or wrap with natural twine.
- Hazardous items such as motor oil, old paint, batteries, and computers should not be placed for garbage pickup. Call your local waste management company for drop-off locations for these types of items.