It’s important to make sure we recycle right, not just recycle often! It’s exciting to see all the new products made from the bags and the technology used to sort them – but how individuals’ recycle does matter.
It doesn’t take many plastic bags to get wrapped up in the recycling equipment, causing the equipment to work inefficiently and then need to be shut down multiple times every day. The facility staff must enter or climb on the screening equipment to cut away bags as in this video.
If you use a plastic bag to collect your recyclables, empty the recyclables into your recycle bin and reuse the bag or recycle it at your grocery or retail store. Don’t mix plastic bottles with plastic bags – that’s what causes safety and efficiency problems in the first place.
Most grocery stores and retail stores such as Walmart, Target, and Lowes have recycle bins for this type of plastic. If you are not reusing the bags, take them to a drop off location, which is probably the same store where you got them.
Find the stores nearest you by visiting this site – a list of all the store drop-off locations in your zip code.
More than just your plastic retail bags can often be recycled, but it’s good to check with your drop-off to see what’s accepted. Examples of what often can be recycled include: