In our modern society here in Baltimore in Maryland, it is crucial to understand how recycling works so that we do not waste resources unnecessarily. A lot of people would like to be involved but are not sure how to get started. And they should get involved as the people recycling at home on a regular basis tend to enjoy doing it and feel good about preserving the environment of our nation.
If you need more information about recycling and how do it efficiently, we have compiled this small guide which explains what you should do and how you should do it.
1. Separate plastic bags
You might think plastic bags are appropriate for gathering all recyclable materials together. However plastic bags can be a time-consuming technique especially for the personal working at the recycling plant.
If you usually put all your aluminium cans into such a plastic bag and bind it before you send it to the recycling facility, then change this habit as soon as possible. You are just wasting your time and the workers’ time, as plastic bags are constantly thrown away, even when they are filled.
It could be a surprise to some of you but plastic bags delay the automated recycling processes at the factory. It is due to the people sorting the garbage who have to open each bag and then throw the content on a tray to determine the type of waste they are dealing with.
2. Avoid shredding paper
Here again this could be a surprise to many, but avoid shredding paper. It is much easier to recycle paper that is in its original form rather than shredded paper where the fibers of the paper have been destroyed. So do not systematically shred your paper, there is no need for that.
Of course shredding is sometimes inevitable if dealing with your private documents. However do not do it for the sake of doing it.
Recycling centers in Maryland will not take pieces of paper that are too small and could end up burning them. The length of the paper fiber defines if it can be recycled into a high-grade product just like valuable printer paper or a substantial material.
3. Compress waste bottles
One of the most effective ways to recycle your plastic bottles is to squash the air out and permanently place the lid back on to seal them. This way there is no water or air inside.
The recycling process has improved since its origin decades ago. Before it was not okay to keep the lids of the bottles, but new techniques allow it now. Recyclers are now advised to leave the lids on as bottle caps handed in separately could be put into general waste if overlooked during screening.
4. Keep cardboard and other recyclable materials clean
While cardboard is eco-friendly, grease could deteriorate the cardboard and make it more difficult to recycle. That’s you should avoid placing foods, liquids and any other animal wastes in your recycling bin, as it will pollute the rest of the recyclable waste materials.
Newspapers used to grip your order of French fries, and most cardboard takeaway containers are better put into a compost bin or standard container.
5. Read your community recycling guide
While the above information applies to most areas, each city and county such as Maryland has its own recycling guide and specific waste management procedures. They will not take the same types of materials everywhere depending on the type of technology used at the local factory.
To be sure that you are not wasting your time recycling materials that might not be reused after all, it is recommended to stay informed and to read your local recycling guide to keep abreast of what your municipality suggests.
6. Become a waste-stream specialist
To reach a better understanding of the type of materials that enter and leave your house on a regular basis, as well as your office or social club, think about making your own waste inventory.
Weigh the different types of material that you use and later discard in your hired dumpster. Plan a material recovery protocol that will reduce the amount of waste reaching the landfill. It is a fun type of thing to do with your kids, and it will make them aware about the environment from an early age.