Make Your Recycling Count - Feed Your Cart the Good Stuff
County solid waste customers can cut through the confusion of curbside recycling by using the newly released 2018 edition of The Dos and Don'ts of Recycling in Hillsborough County. Available in English and Spanish, the guide covers the ins and outs of Hillsborough County's solid waste services and is a valuable resource to help residents recycle right by reducing recycling contamination.
Contamination is when non-recyclable items or excessively dirty materials are placed into the recycling stream. For example, when food or liquids are placed into a recycling container, they saturate otherwise good paper and cardboard - turning it from a recyclable commodity that can be sold into trash that must be burned. Other top contaminants include "tanglers" (items such as cords, wires, tarps, clothing and hoses that get tangled in sorting equipment), plastic bags and wraps, Styrofoam and large plastic items such as kiddie pools, coolers, and toys.
- Contamination reduces the amount of quality recyclables that can be recovered and sold
- Contamination endangers staff at the recycling facility
- Contamination damages processing equipment
- Contamination significantly increases processing costs
If you're not sure an item is recyclable, always discard it in your gray trash cart. When in doubt, throw it out!