What Can Be Recycled?

What Can Be Recycled?

As technology progresses, advances in recycling continue to give consumers more and more options for conserving as many of our resources as possible.

When’s the last time you checked what can and what can’t be recycled? Some recyclable items might surprise you. Let’s take a look:

Recyclable Metals

  • Aluminum cans
  • Aluminum foil and bakeware
  • Steel and tin cans (soup, vegetable, coffee cans)

Aluminum cans are 100% recyclable, but Americans currently discard nearly 3 million tons of them each year. If you consider that recycling one aluminum can save enough energy to run a television for 3 hours, imagine how much energy we could conserve by the simple act of recycling that can vs. tossing it in the trash. And thousands of locations throughout the United States will PAY consumers for their aluminum, so people are literally throwing money away.

Recycling steel and tin cans saves 74% of the energy it takes to produce them.

Recyclable Paper

  • Corrugated cardboard
  • Magazines
  • Office paper
  • Newspapers
  • Junk mail
  • Paper board
  • Phone books
  • Dairy and juice containers (poly-coated paperboard)

Recycling one single ton of paper (such as the junk mail you receive) saves enough energy to power the average American home for six months. And according to the American Forest & Paper Association, recycling just 500 phone books could save about 25 trees, 7,000 gallons of water, 500 gallons of oil, 587 pounds of air pollution, 3.06 cubic yards of landfill space, and 4,077 kilowatt hours of energy.

Recyclable Glass

  • Clear (flint) glass
  • Brown (amber) glass
  • Green (emerald) glass

Non-Recyclable Glass

  • Ceramics such as dishware, ovenware or decorative items
  • Heat-resistant glass such as Pyrex

Recyclable glass is taken to a manufacturing or recycling plant where it is broken into small pieces called “cullet” which is sorted, cleaned, and prepared to mix with other raw materials. Small pieces of ceramic such as coffee cups or plates can sometimes inadvertently make their way into the glass-making process and cause huge problems. Even a small amount of these items can contaminate an entire batch of glass and cost the glassmaker millions of dollars.

Recyclable Plastics

  • Clean bottles, jars and jugs

Non-Recyclable Plastics

  • Ceramics such as dishware, ovenware or decorative items
  • Heat-resistant glass such as Pyrex
  • Plastic grocery bags

Some people think the code number printed on plastics is an indicator of recyclability. Not true! This number simply identifies the plastic type. As long as your recyclable plastic items are cleaned, you can contribute to a cleaner planet! Food or liquid waste can contaminate bales, causing items to be landfilled rather than recycled. Plastic grocery bags can shut down an entire recycling plant and should be kept out of recycling bins.

Because of our dependence on oil, plastic may be one of the most important materials to recycle. Producing a year’s supply of single-use plastic bottles made from takes more than 1.5 million barrels of oil. That is enough to fuel 100,000 cars for a year.

Special Disposal Items

New England Recycling is one of the few approved recycling facilities that ACCEPTS ALL of the material that is now BANNED FROM ALL LANDFILLS in Massachusetts. If it can’t go in the can, we can still accept your items as a drop-off.

At New England Recycling, our primary business focus is to provide an outlet for home owners, contractors, and commercial businesses to recycle as much as possible. We make this easy by providing all-inclusive roll-off containers. Rent ONE dumpster and place everything inside. We’ll pick up the full container from your jobsite and separate the materials back at our recycling facility for you!

If you have more questions, please contact us today!