Have you been regularly participating in the eco-friendly programs in your community? You might be feeling pleased with yourself, but you need to make sure that you’re actually getting the most out of reusable materials. That’s right; there are rules to follow when you’re going green. It’s not enough to use miniature wheelie bins with the best of intentions. See that you’re not making any of the following mistakes too:
Not emptying containers
When you leave sauces and liquids inside jars and bottles, the chances are that they will seep into cardboard and paper thereby contaminating them. If you really want to do your bit for the environment, you should make the effort to clean out containers before you toss them into recycling bins for childcare or whichever industry.
Lining bins with bags
Take note that all kinds of plastic bags are not recyclable. When you put your rubbish in a black garbage bag, it’s likely that they won’t be opened at sorting centres for safety reasons. It would be better if you just skipped the bag, to begin with.
Not removing tape
As tempting as it might be to throw your envelopes and cardboard boxes into the recycling bin for paper, you’ll only be doing more harm than good. Packaging tape and the like cannot be reused so remove these first. The windows or flaps in envelopes should be removed and tossed with the general waste as well.
Throwing small items
The general rule is that anything that is smaller than a sticky note cannot be recycled. Due to its diminutive size, it’s likely that it won’t get sorted properly. It may only end up contaminating other materials in the waste management centre. Sure, it might fit perfectly into your miniature wheelie bins but you have to think of beyond when you’re disposing of it.
Removing the labels
A common misconception is that labels on tin cans and glass jars need to be removed since they’re made of paper and glue. The thing is that you can keep them adhered to the container without running into trouble at the sorting facility.
Recycling wrong items
You’d be surprised at the number of things that you actually cannot reuse. Apart from the super tiny stuff mentioned above, you also cannot recycle straws, coffee cups, kitchen rolls, soap dispenser tops, shiny wrapping paper, rice packets, pizza boxes, and empty aerosols. Oh, and you shouldn’t place the stuff from the shredder into paper recycling bins for offices either.
Dumping old clothes
This actually falls under the above point but deserves to be expounded. While certain fabrics may be organic per se, they still shouldn’t go into the recycling bin. If you really want to clear out your closet of items you no longer use, you’d be better off donating them to the less fortunate. For stuff that is in really bad shape, do some research on textile collections in your area.
Using miniature wheelie bins and trash cans are actually more complicated than you think. But if you keep the above points in mind, your recycling efforts shouldn’t be in vain.
Are you looking for quality bins for your home or office? Check out the products from Ecobin. They also offer some tips on their blog that are worth looking into.