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Posted on: December 7, 2018

Throw it in the trash?? Yes, the recycling rules have changed

What DPW leaders in Highland Park and in towns across the county have learned is that the rules for recycling have changed. And now, sadly, fewer items are eligible for recycling.

One big driver of this change is the fact that China, the biggest processor of paper, plastic and other materials for reuse, has cut back on what they accept for recycling. US recycling companies, including the ones used by towns in Middlesex County, responding to the changes in China and the falling demand for recycling materials, have also cut back on what they accept for recycling.

Effective immediately, the following items are not eligible for recycling;
* Plastic Bags
* Styrofoam
* Greasy cardboard (such as pizza boxes)
* Light plastic containers (items with the number 3, 4, 5, 6, or 7 in the recycling symbol) 
* Aluminum foil
* Tempered glass (made to withstand high temperatures) such as bowls, drinking glasses, measuring cups, and cookware
* Plastic/Wire Hangers
* Light bulbs
* Plastic Silverware
* Plastic toys

These items are still eligible for recycling;
* Plastic containers with the #1 or #2 in the recycling symbol
* Clean cardboard
* Aluminum cans
* Glass bottles & jars
* Mixed paper (newspaper, magazines, soft cover books, and printing paper)

Details on recycling in Middlesex County can be viewed here:
http://www.middlesexcountynj.gov/…/p…/general-recycling.aspx

For more information on the background of these changes, please see this November 5th Star Ledger newspaper story;
https://www.nj.com/…/2018/10/dont_recycle_these_items_china…
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