Garbage to Resources
What most people consider "garbage" is mostly compostable, recyclable or recoverable. Few things, once they are used, are actually waste material. Among such things are latex gloves, non-recyclable plastics, snack packaging and other complex materials that were not designed to be recycled.
What's more, most things are recoverable if they are not mixed together to create municipal solid waste (MSW).
“Waste” is created when materials that are reusable (like old furniture), compostable or recyclable are mixed with non-recyclable materials that contaminate them. Some materials are hazardous and need special handling.
Contact us to learn about what you’re throwing away that is recoverable.
Did you know?
Get to Know Sofas, Desks, Clothing, Refrigerators and Stoves
Otherwise known as "bulky items", your sofas, desks, and other bulky items, as well as clothes and other miscellaneous materials can be recycled!
RecycleMyJunk.com, the Recology collection service for large or bulky items, accepts clothes, furniture, computers, appliances, and other big items. Bulky items are repaired and sold through nonprofit retail stores or they are disassembled and recycled.
Make sure your clothes are folded neatly and put in a cardboard box or a bag labeled “clothing”, or stack clothes in neat bundles tied with string. We distribute collected clothes through our network of nonprofit partners for their thrift stores, and for donations to people in need. Damaged clothes are baled and sent to a textile plant where they are made into clean rags used in maintenance shops.
Get to Know Food Scraps and Yard Trimmings
The leftovers from your dinner and the clippings of brush and grass from your yard are called “organics”, which can be composted and turned to a beneficial soil amendment.
This material is sent to farmers who use it to replenish their soils, which get depleted of their nutrients after every harvest.
Paper & Cardboard
Get to Know Paper and Cardboard
Office and notebook paper, newspapers, magazines and cardboard are all recyclable. These materials are collected as part of our recycling programs and brought to our Materials Recovery Facilities (MRFs) where they are bundled and sent to mills for processing. Paper mills take the materials and reorganize them once again into new kinds of paper and cardboard.
Get to Know Plastic
Did you know that a product that does not have a number within the chasing arrows symbol is not recyclable?
Not every community accepts plastics numbered 1-7.
Visit your community’s Recology company website to learn what you can recycle.
Get to Know Universal Waste
Universal wastes are hazardous products containing materials created by a range of people and businesses. These products contain mercury, lead, cadmium, copper and other materials that are dangerous to human beings and the environment.
Among these products are batteries, fluorescent tubes and bulbs, and some electronic devices. These products require special handling should not be landfilled.
Product stewardship is an approach to product and materials management that improves their utilization and promotes waste minimization. Under product stewardship, the consumer, the product designer, the manufacturer, and the recycler are called upon, as environmental stewards, to take responsibility for the design, manufacture, marketing, distribution, use, and recycling of the product.
As part of our product stewardship work, Recology provides educational programs to the communities we serve, and access to our Environmental Learning Center in San Francisco. We are proud to be a Platinum Business Partner with the California Product Stewardship Council.