Should Plastic Recycling Be Mandatory?

When you throw away your trash you are giving up ownership of the trash to whoever collects it. The cost of having an extra trash can for plastics is pretty minimal, however I’m sure the cost of having extra facilities and trucks to pick up recycled goods is not. The point being, we’ve had plastic in this country for less than a century (?). In 200 years where are we going to be? The hell are we going to do with all this plastic in our water and lands?

Nobody wants to keep their own trash. Everyone deposits their trash on someone else’s property. And those deposits affect everyone.

Where I live you have to divide you garbage into 3 bins. Organic, recyclable and garbage.

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Behold! Mount Pampers!

Where [quote=“Drs, post:2, topic:10114, full:true”]
Where I live you have to divide you garbage into 3 bins. Organic, recyclable and garbage.

Where I live, everyone’s provided one for trash and one for recyclables. But it’s not a “have to” situation, it’s not as if the people who pick up the stuff in the trash bin open everything up and check to make sure there’s no recycling in there.

Seems like most people would take advantage of it if it’s an option, even if it’s not mandatory. Does that seem to be the case in your experience?

I was surprised to see my son recycling when I went to visit him there recently.

I think generally people don’t mind recycling, especially when it’s easy to do. I love in so cal and there are recycling trash cans everywhere.

You have to actively no recycle when in public

Oh, definitely. The suburb I live in has a lot of that, be a good neighbor, help out the community, sort of vibe in it, so I’d be very surprised if the percentage of people who took the small effort to have two trash bags in their house, one for trash and one for recyclables, and then put them in the appropriate container out in the alley wasn’t at least 90%.

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Ya I keep telling myself I need to start. I have no reason not to I just forget to buy a can and call the city to get a recycle bin…most people I think probably want to recycle…maybe not idk

Easier still is to simply reduce the amount of plastic you consume. There are fairly easy habits to get into - reusable grocery bags, steel/aluminum water bottles, forgoing straws and plastic utensils, etc. You can go so far as to purchase plastic free toothbrushes and razors, but even just a single change has an impact.

I can’t remember who made the claim but I read somewhere that the majority of plastic pollution in the oceans comes from commercial fishing, so it never hurts to see where your seafood is coming from. I’ll see if I can find the source of that claim and come back here to link it.

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My city is pretty serious about recycling.

I know a fairly small percentage of ocean plastic is ours. We are fairly far down the list in mismanaged plastic waste as well.

I’ve been cooking a lot more lately since I finished school. Def cuts down on all the junk food boxes and wrappers

China usually leads the way when it comes to pollution, and not just in the way it mismanages its plastic waste.

My town does ‘single stream’ recycling- everything goes in the same huge can- newspapers, bottles, cans, plastics, cardboard. I feel sorry for the poor souls who have the job of separating out the week-old cat food cans and cottage cheese containers.

I do love the robot trucks that pick up the cans and dump the stuff, though.

You forgot the used diapers. Or the used adult diapers.

My city is the same. I often worry that the recyclables just end up in the landfill anyway, not least because you see a lot of confusion/indifference among people in terms of what they throw in the recycle bins. I suppose I could look into that.

Like I said in the above post, while recycling is a good thing it’s always better to reduce one’s consumption right from the beginning.

ewww. You’re correct- that is worse yet.

Apparently in some towns, they do. This is from DRS’s post: Incorrect sorting

The automated collection trucks are equipped with a camera to view waste material emptied into the appropriate compartments. This camera enables Solid Waste Resources staff to identify improperly sorted items and provide targeted public education and follow up with home owners or tenants, as necessary, to address any questions about Guelph’s sorting system.

Cameras! They’re checking up on us.

Same here.

Plastic recycling should remain voluntary. We don’t need any more Government interference.

And for the record, I do recycle religiously. But I do so because I want to.