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Waste Reduction & Recycling
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Mixed recycling makes it convenient to divert valuable materials from the garbage, but it’s important to make sure only the right stuff goes in. One of the challenges to single-stream recycling is the increase in contamination. Folks tend to get a little recycling happy, tossing additional items into the bin. But sending non-recyclable materials can get tangled in machinery, makes recycling harder, and sometimes even hazardous.Please help make single-stream recycling a success by keeping these materials out of the recycling bin.1. Plastic Film and BagsKeep the pesky plastic films and bags out of your mixed recycling cart. They get tangled in machinery and stop the important work of sorting. Instead, drop them off at your local transfer station or grocery store. For a complete list of drop off locations visit: PlasticFilmRecycling.org2. TextilesOld clothes can be donated to your favorite charities, or if they are beyond repair, look for textile drop off sheds around the area. You can also use warn out clothes for rags or material for your next sewing project, but please keep them out of the recycle bin. 3. FoodDid you know that almost 20% of our garbage is food? So what can you do? Food or food contaminated paper or cardboard should not be added to your mixed recycling bin. If you live in Salem or Keizer, you can add all solid food discards and food contaminated cardboard or paper in the yard debris bin. If you live outside of Salem or Keizer and have a yard debris roll cart available, you can add fruits or vegetables to the yard debris bin. 4. Styrofoam - Please don't add stryofoam to your mixed recycling cart. Instead drop off your styrofoam any Monday – Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m at the Fresh Start Market. They accept clean (no stickers or tape) styrofoam that snaps when folded. Colored foam is ok too, but not if it bends without snapping. Construction related foam & foam that bends without snapping is not able to be recycled. Meat trays, egg cartons, coffee cups & takeout containers are not able to be recycled. The Fresh Start Market does not accept styrofoam peanuts, but most mailing stores accept them for free if they are clean and dry. For a complete list, type in the word "peanuts" in our recycling guide.
5. Household Hazardous Waste- Did you know that most cleaners, solvents, pesticides, and fertilizers you may have around the house are actually considered hazardous waste when they're not longer needed? Don't put household hazardous waste in your mixed recycling bin. Instead, drop them off for free Thursdays, and 1st and 3rd Saturdays of the month. 8am to 3:30pm at the Houshold Hazardous Waste Disposal located at the Salem/Keizer Transfer Station at 3250 Deer Park Dr. SE, Salem. Please bring your household hazardous waste in the original containers, if possible with good fitting lids. Please place the material into a box to keep it from tipping over and spilling in transit. Small businesses can use the facility, however they will be charged $2.50 per pound of hazardous waste ($100 minimum). Businesses using the facility must make an appointment by calling the appointment hotline (1-800-444-4244). And as always, if you have an item that you're not sure how to dispose of, visit the online Recycling Guide to find out how and where to dispose of the item. Thanks for your help to keep contaminates out of the recycling stream!
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