Great article: what to do if you're not sure if it goes in the recycling bin - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 3 Old 01-26-2010, 06:18 PM - Thread Starter
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"Wait, Does This Go in the Recycling Bin?"
What to do when you forget the rules.
By Nina Shen Rastogi
Posted Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2010, at 9:43 AM ET


If your community participates in single-stream recycling—where everything from bottles to cans to cardboard boxes get placed in one curbside bin—it might be tempting to err on the side of tossing your mystery item into that bin as well. It's all going to get sorted out in the end, right? But there's an argument to be made that single-stream recycling actually requires more diligence from consumers—contamination rates often rise dramatically in these programs, so anything you can do to keep unwanted items out of the mix will make the system more efficient.
Very useful info for me. I have indeed wondered what to do when I'm not sure.

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#2 of 3 Old 01-26-2010, 06:35 PM
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That's how I decide too. Better to toss something occasionally than to have it wreck a batch of recyclables. My question is with different papers. When I was scrapbooking and making cards, I often wondered if I could recycle my fancy paper scraps. In the end I decided I'd better not, but I still don't know the answer. Don't have those papers anymore but now I wonder about brightly colored paper that you can use with a printer, or the scratch pad I have that had bright papers. Junk mail and magazines are full of dyes so it seems like my scratch pad sheets would be fine but I just don't know... Anyone else know?

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#3 of 3 Old 01-26-2010, 06:42 PM
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I think it's best to ask your area recycling division. In my county, we're instructed to go ahead and throw any items we're not sure about in with recycling and they'll remove it if it's not eligible.
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