A picture's worth a thousand words...

Notice anything different about the Recycle Smart website? Ok, it’s subtle, but we’re excited about the new photos of GlassMetalPlastic, and Paper (In the Bin) and the five Not in the Bin categories (Bagged Recyclables, Plastic Bags/Wrap, Food/Liquid, Clothing, and Tanglers). You might have to hit “refresh” to see the new images in your browser. Some of the changes include: lids and caps are attached to glass and plastic containers and metal and paper show a full complement of recyclable household items. We also updated the Smart Recycling Guide. Best of all, we own these images (we borrowed the previous ones) which means you can use them however you’d like. Email us to request the files. 

Chronicle Covers Recycling

Did you catch the June 26 episode of Chronicle (WCVB), New England’s TV news magazine? We think they did a great job covering a wide range of recycling and waste reduction topics, starting off with the importance of recycling right.

MassDEP’s Greg Cooper explained the recycling contamination problem. Anchor Shayna Seymour also encouraged viewers to check out the Recyclopedia to search on 400 different items and how to properly recycle or dispose of them. Watch the full episode here.

Simple Things

In each newsletter we include a simple “ask” to help keep the momentum of Recycle Smart MA going. This month, it’s multiple choice.  

  1. Forward this newsletter to a colleague, friend or partner organization with a quick personal note (“I hope you’ll check this out”)  or: 
  2. Email the Recycle Smart team and tell us what topics you’d like to hear about in upcoming newsletters. The sky’s the limit. Recycling market updates? Local recycling news? State program info? We want to know! 

And the winner is

The Recycle Smart Facebook post that got the most shares and comments during the month of June was this one of a wheel chair stuffed into a recycling cart. 

The photo came from an incredulous local recycling coordinator.  We agree – how could someone think this belonged in the bin?  We added a link to the post about how to donate used medical equipment to help those in need.   

If you’ve got a photo of a recycling cart or bin that has you shaking your head, please send it to the Recycle Smart team


Partner Spotlight: City of New Bedford

The hardworking recycling team in New Bedford, led by Marissa Perez-Dormitzer, continues to amaze us. They utilize every tool imaginable to educate residents about the importance of recycling smart. The City’s solid waste and recycling webpage displays the Smart Recycling Guide with Spanish translations and the Recyclopedia widget is embedded for easy searches. A very active Facebook page, ads in the local movie theater, and Public Works trucks displaying “Don”t Bag Recyclables” signage are just a few of the tools that give recycling a high profile in New Bedford. They’ve also blazed a trail with the Recycling IQ Program and shared their experiences and lessons learned with communities across the Commonwealth. Way to go New Bedford!

Cape Cod's Local Glass Recycling Solution

At a May 30 ribbon cutting, town officials, local legislators, and community recycling advocates gathered at the Town of Dennis’ Transfer Station to watch public works trucks from Wellfleet, Barnstable, and Dennis tip 10-ton loads of glass at the new regional glass recycling depot. With a $120,500 grant from the MassDEP, the Town of Dennis created a local outlet where glass collected from residents and businesses will be converted into processed glass aggregate (PGA). That’s a fancy way of saying the glass gets crushed into a construction grade product for public works projects such as pipe bedding and sub-base road and sidewalk construction.

Through the Northeast Resource Recovery Association, a contracted vendor will bring mobile equipment to Dennis every six months to crush the glass into a coarse sand-like material.  With summer upon us, Cape Cod homes and businesses generate a lot of glass. Instead of trucking that glass off-Cape to a recycling facility, as the towns have done for decades, the glass will be processed and used locally. That saves a lot of truck miles, diesel emissions, and cost for local communities. Towns that deliver glass to Dennis will pay a per-ton fee (much less than off-Cape prices) and will take-back an equivalent amount of processed glass aggregate once it’s ready.

Wishing everyone a safe and happy Fourth of July!
Thanks for recycling smart with us,

The Recycle Smart Team at MassDEP