Can I Put This in the Recycling Bin? Join Our Chat and Ask…

recycle often recycle right chat

recycle often recycle right chat

When you’re the designated recycler at Β home (because “recycling nazi” really isn’t very friendly), you’re also the person expected to know “Can I recycle this?” Weird plastic knick knacks? Colored glass? Paper with sparkly stuff on it? In many cases, I can offer a definite “yes” or “no”; in others, my answer is “I don’t know – toss it in the recycling bin, and the let the pros figure it out.”

Often, that’s fine, but with single-stream recycling now the norm in most places, you always take the risk of contaminating materials… meaning that those pros at the end of the line will end up tossing some of your materials in the trash rather than sending them on for recycling. As that kind of undermines the whole point of this practice, learning more about the materials you can put in that blue bin – and how they interact with other materials – helps ensure that you are, in fact, recycling your wastes… and not just throwing them away by proxy.

We’ve partnered with Waste ManagementΒ and old buddy Derek Markham of Ecopreneurist to help you do just that: next Friday (November 21) from 2-3pm EST, we’ll be holding a Twitter chat titled “Recycle Often. Recycle Right.”Β The focus: helping you do just that by answering your questions about recycling. From “Can I put this in the recycling bin?” to what happens after materials are picked up to the reasons you can’t recycle certain materials, we’re open to whatever questions you have about recycling your waste more effectively.

Got a question you want answered? Simply plug it into the comments below. Next Wednesday, WM and I will pick the questions we’ll focus on during the chat. The folks who ask those questions we choose will get eco-friendly prizes for their sharp thinking!

New to the Twitter chat concept? It’s easy – just follow the hashtag #RORRchat, and include it in any Tweets you send out to the group.

I’ll be sending out reminders on Twitter and Facebook, so if you’re not already, now’s a good time to follow us there… Feel free to ask questions about the chat there, also.


  1. Lawernce Kenemore Jr.

    The problem is people should be able to recycle ALL recycables not just certain ones. Recycling needs to be re built from the ground up. Provide a container that fits inside the home to increase recycling and accept all recycables. However the recyclers have a vested interest in keeping things the way they are. Contamination is a joke!

  2. Lawernce Kenemore Jr.

    That is so bogus. Recycling is Recycling and that means everything. Who placed the limits the Recyclers of course and what they are recycling is the low hanging fruit. Why? Because that is where thew money is.

      1. Lawernce Kenemore Jr.

        You can find my thoughts and 7 years of R&D on recycling on facebook @fillabox corporation see the video and at Fillabox.net

      1. Lawernce Kenemore Jr.

        That is what Recyclers have tried to fool people with for years so that they could get funding. There is lots of money to be made in recycling. Do not let the big companies fool you they are feeding at the government trough.

        1. Steve Hanley

          Hmmmm….clearly there’s much I don’t know about the financial aspects of the business, but I’m always willing to learn.

  3. Eden Keeper

    I’m curious to know whether the plastic bags you can supposedly drop off for recycling at grocery stores actually get recycled. Also, in SF we just started recycling textiles (pillows, old clothes, etc). Why don’t more municipalities do this?

  4. Dawn Killough

    I’m always confused about what to do with mixed products – cardboard boxes with plastic handles, etc. Can these still go into my recycling bin, or do I need to separate the parts? And ditto the plastic bags question from Eden Keeper.

    Any new construction waste recycling options we should be aware of?


    1. Lawernce Kenemore Jr.

      Dawn if you had a FillAbox you could recycle all these items you are asking about and the FillAbox presorts it for you?

  5. Sandy Dechert

    Who says what goes into a landfill and what’s recycled? I have heard that it’s up to the original trash handler to make the choice based on its facility’s current load. If this is so, then why do we bother recycling?

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