End Recycling Contamination in Logan County
Updated: Feb 16, 2022
The popularity and success of recycling programs in Logan County have proven to be a win-win for residents and the community. With 16 Recycling and Pay-As-You-Throw Drop-Off Centers across the county, recycling has become a way of life for many people.
As the Solid Waste District expands its programs and attracts more first-time users, it receives more and more quality recyclables. It also receives more of what it can’t recycle, often called contamination.
“Contamination happens resulting from something called ‘wishcycling,’” says District Material Recycling Facility Supervisor Mike Price. “It’s when well-intentioned, possibly excited first-time recyclers wish and hope they could recycle everything, figuring it will get sorted out at the recycling plant,” he explains. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Items that don’t belong in recycling often slow the process or injure workers.
According to District Coordinator Angel Payne, the contamination problem is fixable as long as the District keeps educating the public about the recycling rules which often change due to market demands beyond local control.
Currently the District receives a lot of large plastic things like laundry baskets, trash cans, big plastic bins – all of which are not recyclable and need to go into the trash. Residents who are not sure about what to do with large plastic items – or any items – should call the District offices at 937-599-1253.
Drink and food containers: water/soda/milk/juice bottles, cartons, jugs, bottles, tubs, jars
Clamshell fruit, vegetable and take-out containers
Empty pill bottles (remove patient info)
Kitty litter pails 5 gallons or less
Plastic garden pots less than 8” in diameter (free of dirt)
Microwave food trays
Small clear rigid packaging
Bathroom, laundry and cleaning containers (shampoo, fabric softener)
Aseptics: juice boxes, broth
Styrofoam of any kind
Large bulky or rigid plastics (larger than a 5-gallon bucket like kiddie pools, drums)
Composites: more than one kind of plastic or with attached metal rivets, bolts
Construction, renovation or demolition-related debris such as vinyl siding, pipe, tubing, pool liners
Film, such as food wrap, plastic grocery bags
Sports equipment (helmets)
Shower curtains and rings
Toys, garden hoses, Christmas lights, window blinds
Glass is also a category that can bring up some confusion. The District does not accept window panes, auto glass, ceramic cookware, China dishes and Mason jars. They do accept household container glass including beer bottles, wine bottles and food bottles and jars.
Recycling: Contamination Matters
Some of the biggest contributors to contamination are electronics, paint, household hazardous waste, clothes, ammunition, batteries and needles.
Many of these items could cause the recycling equipment to jam or shut down for repair which costs valuable time and money. There is also the possibility of injury to workers from exploding batteries and ammunition along with needle sticks.
Plus, from an economic standpoint, the District strives to keep the recycling bales they produce as clean as possible for sale on the market.
How You Can Help
Don’t follow the crowd. When you visit the Recycling and PAYT Drop-off Centers don’t assume that just because someone else has thrown a plastic lawn chair into the plastics bin that you can, too. Those aren’t recyclable in Logan County.
Research the recycling programs in your county. All of Logan County’s recycling information is presented here www.logancountyrecycles.com.
Take advantage of the District’s special recycling opportunities and events such as the Center for Hard to Recycle Materials (CHARM) and the daily electronics collections offered.
Once you know the rules, lead by example.
Learn more about how to recycle in Logan County. When you recycle more, you save on your Pay-As-You-Throw trash costs. Find one of our 16 Recycling and Pay-As-You-Throw drop-off centers near you.