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Pledge to Recycle Better for Chance to Win Concord Trash Bags



The recycling industry has been significantly changing due to increased challenges with global market conditions. Recent market conditions have increased the demand for the improvement of the quality of materials in an effort to reduce contamination and help sustain recycling efforts. Concord residents are invited to get involved in celebration of America Recycles Day on November 15th by learning more about what is recyclable and pledging to recycle better for a chance to win a bundle of pay-as-you-throw trash bags.


Americans have adapted over the years to recycle more from expanded educational outreach and convenient recycling programs, such as single-stream recycling. Single-stream recycling allows for all recyclables to be collected in the same bin and has made sorting materials into separate bins a practice of the past. Concord, like many communities, introduced single-stream recycling to increase the ease and participation of recycling. Single-stream programs may have successfully increased recycling rates, but it also has led to increased contamination of materials. The ease of placing all materials into a single bin has led consumers to practice “aspirational recycling” in which they place questionable items in their bin hoping it is recyclable. Consumers have good intentions doing this since it is better to recycle something than throwing it away in the trash, but most often these items are not recyclable.


Materials are transported to recycling facilities where they are sorted out by machinery and line pickers, but single-stream facilities are not always equipped to efficiently process out certain materials. Plastic film is a leading source of recycling contamination and is not easy to sort at facilities. Plastic film includes plastic grocery bags, plastic wrap, bubble wrap, bread bags, and other similar materials. Plastic bags must be kept out of household recycling and instead should be recycled at accepting local retailers since they have a dedicated stream for this material.


Cities that offer single-stream recycling are facing challenges to improve recycling materials to work with the current market. The City of Concord has been proactively educating residents about keeping non-rigid plastic out of the recycling stream through public outreach initiatives and non-compliance tags for curbside collection. Educating consumers about what materials are acceptable and not acceptable for single-stream recycling raises awareness about what materials can be put the recycling bin and how to recycle better. Listen to the City of Concord’s Talk Concord podcast recycling episode to hear a detailed discussion regarding the latest about recycling conditions: http://bit.ly/recyclingpodcast.


Take the #BeRecycled pledge at AmericaRecyclesDay.org to commit to learning more about what materials are acceptable for recycling in your community, reducing the amount of waste you produce, or buying products made from recycled content. Residents that publicly share their pledge to Facebook or Twitter using the #BeRecycled hashtag and tag Concord General Services @ConcordNHGS by 5:00 p.m. on November 15th will be entered for a chance to win a bundle of pay-as-you-throw trash bags. Learn more about the City of Concord’s acceptable recycling materials and how you can recycle better at www.concordnh.gov/recycling.