Mar 10, 2010


It pays to be an eavesdropper. I'd do it just for the gossip, but occasionally I learn things. (Imagine that.) Such was the case a few weeks ago when I overheard the meeting between Lisa and Beau, the Business Recycling Specialist from the Cuyahoga County Solid Waste District.

While the office is fairly hip to recycling (as I mentioned in a previous post), there's always more we can do. And Beau gave us the what's what.

First of all, the county website has a bevy of information to help with your solid waste needs. (Don't go there--you know what I mean.) But here's some tidbits I overheard that are helpful for businesses and individuals:
  • In the city of Cleveland, you can recycle plastics #1-7. Unless you are a business with a recycling program, you do have to drop off recyclables.

  • There is no company in the region that recycles incandescent light bulbs. But you can--and should--recycle fluorescent bulbs because they contain mercury. You can bring them to Home Depot to do so.

  • There's also no company in Cuyahoga county that recycles styrofoam--because there's no end market for the material. Avoid it! (And, hence, avoid that awful sound styrofoam makes when it brushes against something. Eek.)

  • Aveda stores take bottle caps (from any bottles) to recycle. (These are a #5 plastic that many cities don't collect.)

  • Compost! So much of what gets trashed can easily go back into the earth--a win-win situation.

  • Before you considering tossing something you don't think can be recycled, think again. There may indeed be a business that accepts it in Cuyahoga County. Check out the numerous publications, detailing all of the options. We used the Recycling Directory for Business and Industry to find a company that would pick up a literal ton of paper at our warehouse to recycle.
It should go without saying--but I'm a verbose little chicken, so I'm going to say it anyway--that recycling is the last step in the life cycle of an item. Reduce your consumption first!

1 comment:

BiG said...

hey, carl.

kudos on spreading the word!

one addition: the city of cleveland does not take styrofoam, but you can recycle your styrofoam egg cartons and trays at heinen’s. there are bins as soon as you walk in.

i found a few blurps on the internet to confirm this, including the following:

i also called the rocky river heinen's, and a nice lady confirmed this to be fact.

go earth!