By Marie Clark
There is so much stuff that can be recycled that most of us don’t know about. While recycling comes third to reducing our use of things and reusing what we already have, I find it to be one of the most important things we can do when we are really done with products. When I come across something that I am done with and don’t know what the procedure is on how to dispose of it, I just google “how to recycle ______.” I’ve since discovered that batteries, pizza boxes, crayons, paper towels, old shoes, and many other things are actually able to be recycled to continue the cycle of use in a new way rather than just ending up at the landfill.
Now, finding a way to recycle unique things does take extra effort. Sometimes it requires a call to get something picked up from a specific company that recycles the product. Sometimes it requires going out of your way to recycle something at a recycling center rather than just your household recycle bin. Sometimes it even means you have to ship your recycling to a specific place that recycles that specific product. Recycling unique products outside of paper, plastic, and glass is no doubt difficult and requiring more effort. But, as economics shows, the more people that demand access to easier recycling options, a supply is much more likely to be crafted to meet these expectations. So, it is important we start rethinking how much we can recycle and demanding the available options in our more local areas if they are not already in place.
Here are some unique things that can be recycled:
- Computers and electronics
- Ink/ toner cartridges
- Athletic shoes
- Toothbrushes and Razors
- Packaging peanuts
- Cosmetics Packaging
Look into the processes behind each of these products and how to recycle them through these two articles:
Here is an interesting sort of Craigslist website called Freecycle where people can post in your local area things for free items with the goal of reducing waste through community interactions. Also, check out MSU Recycling and their graphics and what they do and don’t recycle!