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Use Recyclables to Recycle

Instead of distinguishing between landfill garbage and recycling bins in the home, use paper and plastic grocery bags to sort and store recyclable goods.

Photo of Alisha Snyder
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My current residence is in Cleveland Heights, OH.  My first year here, I was told there was no recyling in the city, which quite frankly broke my heart as I had grown-up with my mother who puts 3 times more recyling at the curb than trash destined for landfill.  As I met more people in the area, I realized that Cleveland Heights DOES in fact recycle, but pick-up is incredibly specific.  Just as specific as my mother's method.  

PAPER PRODUCTS:  To recycle paper products, use paper grocery bags or empty cases of soda (20 count) to store recycling.  Once full it can be taken to the curb as is.   Get more bang from your bag: break down cardboard boxes (like food packaging) so they will be flat and take up less space.

PLASTIC PRODUCTS: Utilizing plastic grocery bags hung near the garbage can or under the sink is an easy way to seperate clean plastic from landfill waste.   Pro-tip: Use extra plastic groccery bags to tie together gallon milk jugs instead of trying to stuff them all into the bin.  

METAL AND GLASS: Store rinsed cans and jars in their own bag, preferably something reusable and washable.  These can then be toted outside to the recycling bin for pick-up along with your other bags of sorted recyclables.  

Happy sorting!

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Photo of Meena Kadri

Love the pro-tip! :^)

I'm curious to know how you found out this information? Do you think there's an opportunity to make it more accessible and clear to more people, especially newcomers to the city? On another post, someone was suggesting that real estate agents could help by distributing this kind of information to new tenants and home owners. We're excited about others thoughts which explore the gap between information and users in the upcoming Ideas phase. Hope to see you there!