Anyone passing through San Antonio will probably be thinking of that town’s most popular slogan “Remember the Alamo.” But if you talk to the locals, their new favorite slogan might just be “Remember the Recyclables.” San Antonio has gotten into the recycling game in a big way. Each home owner is provided with their own recycling bin that is picked up once a week. There are also drop off centers all around the town for various items that can’t be picked up but can still be recycled. So which are you… a drop-off or a pick-up recycler?
For the pick-up bins, it has become a new routine for folks in San Antonio to effortlessly separate their recyclable items. The first thing to go into the bin would be anything paper. Not only would this include newspapers, magazines and junk mail but also all the cardboard food box containers, phone books, office paper and paperback books.
You can also toss in most of your plastic bottles. The plastic industry has made San Antonio recycling even easier by labeling their products with a number 1 through 7 on the bottom of the packaging. Any item stamped with that range of number is good to go into the pick-up can. San Antonio recycling pick-ups also take on glass and metal. This means any of the glass jars with their metal lids that you’re finished with like baby food or pickle jars. It’s recommended that you rinse them out first. For the metal, all soda cans, aluminum foil or baking tins can be tossed into the bin as well.
What you can’t recycle in the weekly pick-up are diapers, clothing, shoes, hangers, auto parts, motor oil, paints, toiler paper or e-waste. E-waste is basically anything that can be plugged into an outlet. For these items you have the option of the many San Antonio recycling drop-off sites. Here’s the list of specific items that have their own dedicated recycling drop-off place:
* Car Parts
* Cell Phones
* Glass (from mirrors, windows etc.)
* Household hazardous waste (batteries, cleaning solvents, paints etc.)
* Household appliances
* Used Cooking Oil
It might seem like a hassle to have to make several different stops at all those recycling centers but the benefit to San Antonio is easy to see when the roads and parks can stay free of garbage. Consider these facts from the Environmental Protection Agency:
“In 2007, 56% of all the paper that was used in American homes was from recycled paper. That translates into about 360 pounds of paper for every American. When we can recycle 1 ton of paper we are actually saving 17 trees, 7,000 gallons of water, 3 cubic yards of landfill, 2 barrels of oil and 4,100 kilowatt hours of electricity. When you add in the decrease population and carbon emissions that go along with all that recycle, you can clearly see why a vibrant recycling program is important for all of us.”