At one of our quarterly Eco-Meetings we got a great suggestion from one of our team members. He complained about what a pain it is to recycle your plastic grocery bags at the grocery store. (** Sidebar for out of town readers – in Portland you can’t recycle plastic grocery bags at the curb like paper, plastic, glass and many other items — you have to take them back to the grocery store). He asked if we could find a way to recycle these here — especially since we were recycling the stretch film that wraps all the pallets of paper we get each week.
With that question in mind, I called our Clackamas County recycling guru, Shannon, and asked the question. Much to my surprise and happiness, he said we COULD recycle it with our stretch film — all we had to do was bag it up and put it in with our corrugated recycling. Wow! Now we have a designated recycle bin for plastic bags and many people, including me, use it each week. You never know until you ask! This great suggestion helped us start a program that is more convenient for employees (making them more likely to recycle more) and helps all of us to keep our ‘green focus’ at the front of our minds.
NOTE — your mileage may vary… Please call your local trash and recycle company to find out their specific requirements. I found out recently that even within Portland, different areas are served by different private trash hauling companies, and they can each set their own rules about what they do and don’t take in their recycle pick up. But don’t be afraid to ask! You never know what you may be able to recycle.
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