Smart recycling

Last updated, 2/2/2020
Contact: Carol Chamberland

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Recycle via blue bins

Item Comments ABQ*
Paper products
Brown paper bags Reusable cloth grocery bags are much better. Yes
Cardboard Yes
Cash register receipts The ink is generally petroleum-based and the paper contains BPS No
Coated liquid food cartons (milk, juice, etc.) Carton recycling is a specialized process not currently available in NM No
Dry food boxes Remove the plastic/waxed bag inside the box. Yes
Hard bound books The adhesive in the binding is not recyclable. Remove the binding before putting in Blue Bin. Yes
Junk mail See-through address slots in envelopes are OK. Yes
Magazines Yes
Newspapers Yes
Paper Yes
Paper egg cartons Yes
Paperback books Yes
Pizza boxes Only recycle portion that has no oil/grease. Yes
Phone books Yes
Shredded paper Must be in see-through plastic bags. Yes
Tissues/napkins/paper towels No
Waxed paper Commercial composters can take this material. No
Wax/plastic lined paper take-out food containers No
Wrapping paper Already recycled too many times, often contains coatings and glitter. No

Plastic products
Bottles/tubs #1-7 Only recycle if it didn’t contain oil/grease.  Leave tops on. Yes
Plastic wrap (e.g., Saran) No
Rigid (bulky, non-food) Yes
Styrofoam food take out box No Styrofoam at all, even if it has a recycle triangle mark. No
Styrofoam Peanuts/bubble wrap No

Metal products
Aluminum cans Free of contents. Yes
Aluminum foil/pie pans Only recycle if it didn’t contain oil/grease. Yes
Steel/tin cans Free of contents. Yes
Foil seals on yogurt or other containers Discard in black bin No

Alternative Recycling – Do Not Recycle in Blue Bins

There is extensive information on how & where to dispose of non-recyclable and hazardous waste published by the City of Albuquerque and the New Mexico Recycling Coalition. Examples of items that can be recycled in other ways:

Aerosol/propane cans
Car & truck parts/fluids
Medical bio-waste/ needles/pills
Miscellaneous metals
Plastic bags
Yard waste/wood

Goes to the Landfill via Black Bin

Kitty litter

Hazardous materials – do not recycle, do not dispose in trash

Residents of the City of Albuquerque and Bernalillo County may bring residential some hazardous wastes to the Household Hazardous Waste Collection Center (HHWCC) at no charge. Other residents will need to check with their municipality or the NM Environment Department. Examples of items that do not belong in a landfill include:

Fluorescent light bulbs
Household chemicals/pharmaceuticals
Oil-based paints

Zero Waste Action Team, Central Group, Rio Grande Chapter
Smart recycling