BUSTED: Blue bin mishaps

Recycling bin loaded with mixed recyclables.

We’ve all been there, standing at a recycling bin, wondering whether what we’re holding is recyclable or not. “Oh well,” you might have heard yourself saying. “I’ll toss it in and they’ll sort it out.” We call this “wish-cycling,” and it’s a big no-no. It can result in facility shutdowns, contamination of true recyclables, and can even injure the folks whose job it is to sort your recyclables at our […]

Food and recycling don’t mix

For a product or material to be recyclable, there needs to be someone out in the global commodities market who wants to buy that material and use it to manufacture new product. Buyers let us know what types of material they want and what condition it has to be in for them to accept it—and none of them want food residue on the  plastic, paper, or metal recyclables they buy. […]

Renting? Here are some tips

If you’re renting a house or apartment in Chittenden County, here are some things you need to know about recycling (and waste in general): Recycling is what we do here in Vermont—It’s also the law. This recycling poster shows what should be recycled in your blue bin. CSWD provides posters, stickers, and other resources to help you and your housemates recycle more. Check out our Resource Request page to download […]

Vermont breweries change can carriers for recyclable version

Black plastic has been in the news lately. The reason? It’s no longer recyclable in Chittenden County. Several Vermont breweries took quick steps to adapt to the change. If you haven’t yet heard, black plastic is no longer recyclable in Chittenden County because the recycling markets—global companies that buy our material —no longer want it. You can’t “un-black” black, which limits what it can be recycled into.

Black plastic: no longer recyclable in Chittenden County

A black plastic food service container

Black plastic is pretty easy to identify. It’s plastic, and it’s black. And in Chittenden County, it doesn’t belong in your recycling bin. We recommend reusing black plastic containers to store leftovers, or in a craft project. But if you can’t invent another use for them, black plastic goes in the trash. If you’re wondering why, keep reading. The short answer The global commodities market – where we sell the […]

2016 Changes to Disposal Law & How They Affect You

Several new policies from Act 148 (Vermont’s Universal Recycling & Composting Law) and the CSWD Ordinance are in effect as of July 1, 2016. Here’s what is changing in Chittenden County on July 1, 2016: Trash haulers must offer leaf & yard debris collection service. Leaf & yard debris is already banned from the landfill. Now haulers who offer trash collection must also offer a service to collect leaf & […]

The Money in Recycling Has Vanished; What Do States, Cities Do Now?

This is a repost, with permission, of an article originally published on Stateline, an initiative of The Pew Charitable Trusts. With great fanfare and promises of a new era of recycling in Alabama’s capital, officials from Montgomery and from a Florida company called Infinitus opened a state-of-the-art mixed waste and material recovery plant in April 2014. The plant created over a hundred jobs and allowed Montgomery residents to put their […]

CSWD Responds to VPR recycling story

A woman holds a blue bin full of recyclables

UPDATE 5/19/16: Listen to CSWD General Tom Moreau’s response on VPR’s Morning Edition with Mitch Wertlieb: Chittenden County Says Preparation Is Key To Keep Recycling Despite Low Commodity Prices The recent VPR story on recycling in the Windham Solid Waste Management District in Brattleboro (As Universal Recycling Ramps Up, Low Commodity Prices Strain Vt. Waste Districts, 5/10/16) leaves an incomplete picture of the state of recycling in Vermont, and also […]

Recycling fee increase – and what it means for you

This is an extended version of a story that originally appeared in the CSWD NewsFlash, our monthly newsletter. Get our news first by signing up to receive the NewsFlash on our homepage or on the NewsFlash Archives page.   On July 1, 2015, CSWD will raise its recycling “tip fee” at our Materials Recovery Facility (MRF). The tip fee is what we charge large trash & recycling haulers when they […]

How one metal can shut down an entire recycling facility

Here’s what happened yesterday when someone tossed a small container of household hazardous waste into their recycling bin: 42 recycling facility staffers had to be evacuated from the recycling facility 25 staffers experienced symptoms including watery eyes, vomiting, and trouble breathing 13 staffers were taken to the UVM Medical Center 6 different local and state emergency response teams were involved in managing the incident The entire facility was shut down […]