I know I am late on the bandwagon but I have been converted into a recycle freak this year. I am a little compulsive and I found out this great information. Also, come visit our Wilmington, DE storage facility if you need to store your extra stuff.
Plastic recycling can be a confusing subject, because there are so many different types. Plastic is in many things, from plastic grocery store bags to bottles and even packaging peanuts, so it’s important to know how to recycle these items.
PP and PVC are some of the most difficult plastics to recycle, and they may not be available for curbside recycling. However, you can find facilities to take these materials. Many other types of plastic can be recycled easily.
LDPE stands for low-density polyethylene. You can recognize it by the number 4 that’s in the recycling symbol. These are the types of plastic that you probably use most often. These items include grocery bags, plastic wrap and food storage baggies. Grocery bags are the easiest to recycle out of all of these.
You can take your plastic grocery bags back to the store where you got them for recycling. This is the easiest way to recycle these items, because, chances are, you will be at that store again soon. You can also use these plastic grocery bags for smaller trash bins, such as in the bathroom, the laundry room or the office. The most efficient way of getting rid of plastic grocery bags is to bring your own reusable bags to the store when you go shopping.
Most grocery stores now have plastic grocery bag bins for recycling, often located right outside of their stores. You should check the label on the container before depositing your grocery bags, and make sure that they are both clean and dry. You can also place other LDPE plastic items in these bins.
The number six inside of the recycling symbol signifies Styrofoam (EPS), or Polystyrene (PS). Since Styrofoam is not biodegradable, you should always recycle or reuse it, unless you can avoid it entirely.
Many electronic goods are packaged inside Styrofoam, and this should be recycled. Unfortunately, Styrofoam food packages cannot be recycled, things like coffee cups, egg cartons or meat packaging. Since these plastics must go in the garbage, it is best to avoid buying foods with Styrofoam packaging altogether. For instance, you can buy egg cartons made out of cardboard instead, which is recyclable. There are some things with the number six symbol, like CD and DVD cases, that can be recycled. Some cups are also marked with the number six symbol.
The Alliance of Foam Packaging (AFPR) has a list of locations for dropping off Styrofoam and other foam packaging, as well as other information. Even though Styrofoam food items can’t be recycled, in 2010 the AFPR reported that in 2010 over 50% of the Styrofoam they collected was used to produce recycled packaging.
Packaging peanuts are made out of Styrofoam. They are also known as polystyrene loose fill, and it is hard to recycle them. They scatter around your house and stick to clothes. Also, they are not accepted in most plastic recycling bins. You can call the Plastics Loose Fill Council to find out where their many drop-off locations are located. Call 800-828-2214 for their 24-hour hotline, or look online at the Loose Fill Search center. However, if you have the storage space, these Styrofoam peanuts can be useful later for packing or shipping, so you may want to consider storing them in your house for future use.
Even though plastic recycling can seem daunting and confusing, it is satisfying and worth the effort. There are many Internet resources you can use to find your nearest recycling facility, or determine which types of plastics belong in which bins. Happy recycling!
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