2019 - Plastic Waste and Recycling


Good article.

“buy less stuff, which would also have the benefit of reducing some of the upstream waste created when products are made”

I’m not sure consumers will change their buying habits unless manufacturing changes the way they present the product. We became a “throw away society” and now we are seeing the result of those actions.

If we could convince one retail giant to change their bulk buying habits and put pressure on the manufacturers to change the way package their products… It may change attitudes. Walmart??

Another article to read…a change that was made 25 years ago for convenience of travel and the need for humans to wear protection against the sun…


I read where an island nation had banned sunscreen because of the coral reef damage. That was some time ago. I think this island nation (began with a “B”?) was the first in the world to do this. Talk about a “world leader!”

Remember when buying things in bulk would cost less? I found it odd some years ago many items that we used to buy in bulk started costing more - according to the “unit price” they had to include on their price labels (NYS law many years ago). Coffee was a big one. Little by little we noticed that it was actually cheaper to buy several smaller packages of something than it was to buy one large package. That led to a lot of packaging material to either be recycled or disposed of. Doesn’t make any sense - unless not enough people were buying in bulk? :thinking:


I think you are right…the costs are higher as most are buying for convenience in single packaging.
Meat packaging is still an issue in grocery stores. Even if you buy directly for the farm and have it butchered, or from the meat shop, they use that waxed or oiled butcher paper…which is compostable… I notice in some products they are using cardboard and a cellulose looking pane on the front that is actually compostable…not just biodegradable, which could take 10000 years.


I remember when Donna and I were first married. There was a Mom & Pop store around the corner from us where the husband was a butcher. He had sides of beef and pork hanging in his walk-in freezer. We always bought our meats from them… freshly cut to order and wrapped in that brown butchers’ paper. Even growing up my mother used to send one or two of us kids down to the corner grocery store which was also a butcher shop - Wasserman I think his last name was. And there was an older couple who had a small store around the corner and two doors down on the next street that was also a small grocery store. It was run by an old Italian couple who were both butchers. Mary, the wife would make her own Italian sausage - sweet and hot varieties - which my mother always had us buy for “spaghetti night” (Wednesdays). Those were the days… a lot of Mom & Pop stores on every block. Little by little either the owners either got too old to continue, passed away or just couldn’t compete with the big chains. Sad… I think of the three small stores around my old homestead, only one is still running. I think that’s because it’s on a corner which is also a bus stop (public transportation). How times have changed… and not for the better.

I think we preferred the butchers’ paper wrap over the black or white Styrofoam with the plastic film cover. There is more to recycle or what ends up in the trash than before. As kids we used to compost the butchers’ paper, old newspapers, etc… And speaking of compost… at least this year my son didn’t plow my compost pile over the bank like he did last year. :rofl: I shoveled my driveways instead of having him come down and plow them with his 4-wheeler. Harder work, but my compost pile is safe and will be ready to use this spring.


We need a solution worldwide…


Why is it we can motivate people to do this by a hashtag, but we cannot get our governments to see, or agree, on what is required around the world for recycling and climate change???


This is a very graphic article…so I won’t post, but you can look it up if you want to read it…this is the title:

“Whales keep eating plastic and dying. This one’s stomach had 88 pounds of calcifying trash”



Facebook is useful for that. We have a local group always posting pics of the mess and the rows of filled blue rubbish bags. And I always carry my bag when I’m out walking whether I’m on one these clean-ups or not. My physio therapist says it’s great therapy for my new hip traipsing through the woods/parks and uneven grounds, so it’s a win win :grin:


Isn’t it amazing the junk you find that people just toss out along the roads? One year the town went around every road and picked up nothing but car tires. We had 3 dump trucks full of them. Mosquito breeders they are! And in one wooded area - out in “nowhere” on a back road - we found a spot where someone thought it was their own personal landfill. :face_with_raised_eyebrow: We actually had to use the Grad-All (22’/6.7m telescopic boom) with a ditching bucket to clean up the mess and then carted several truck loads off to the town landfill. We spent a day and a half cleaning that up. It’s terrible what some people do without any thought given to their actions.

Every spring the town used to have “spring cleanup.” The people could clean up their properties of tree limbs, litter, etc. and the town would pick it up. One person “saved” every plastic milk jug they used all year and put them out (in plastic bags) every spring. The truck that did that road was just a one-ton and they’d have to make 4 to 6 trips just for the plastic… then come back for everything else. And this was at a farm. I wonder where they stored this all year long. :face_with_raised_eyebrow:


Barn mowl, be my guess!


Around here the cans are considered refundables and go to their own streams… one for beer / alcoholic types and one for pops / non alcohol types, similar for bottles and each has a different rate…
They like them uncrushed so they can tell the content and thus the deposit rate… Also they don’t deal with out of Province containers… so they need to read that as well… that might apply more to alcohlic ones… since pop etc is much the same and hard to tell… OOPs might get a non alcoholic rate from the bottle depot, not sure… but nothing from the beer and liquour stores refund counters… they have their own reasons… in this area most come from either AB or from the US… people just take them back there if they have a lot… mostly is a pain when doing ‘roadkills’ in roadside or bush cleanups. cans get crushed and mutilated… no can read, no payout. Business wins… in the old days, refunds were incentives to get containers returned to the source, or depot. Boundaries were ignored… if a few cents meant it was collected in the wild and brought out of the environment, you got a bounty… not these days… so a lot of them stay out… tin cans rot away, but aluminum lasts, don’t get me going on glass… I think one should be able to get some credit for broken glass by the pound / kg… to help get that out of the wild… or even in town. regardless of what it is or was. But glass recycling has suffered setbacks in BC…

I see we are now in a trade battle with someone re Canola… also that the same someone has decided not to take the worlds trash for recycling… perhaps they would be happy to not have to get scrap steel in the form of old cars and such… would help them out… also all the old computers and electronics could be diverted into local operators… and so forth… it isn’t fair to have them take our waste. or for that matter so much Canola…



Something I never knew until a few years ago was that recycling centers won’t take window glass… because of the safety glazing. That contaminates the glass and renders it unusable for making something new from it. My thought was, “but… but… but… but what about the “old” window panes that don’t have safety glazing on them?” “No good” I was told. “Window glass is window glass.” Seems kind of stupid to me, but I imagine it would take a lot of time to sort that out - especially if someone mixed in a broken pane with safety glazing. I can see their point. It is a valid one, and one of the reasons why China began refusing out “recyclables” - too much contaminated recyclables mixed in. You can’t make a quality product out of inferior recycled material.

That made me think of soy. China was a big importer of US soy, but with the trade tariffs had drastically reduced the quantity it imports. They’ve picked up a little, but nowhere near what they used to. As for me, we pretty much stopped purchasing anything with soy or soy oil in it. One hundred percent of US soy is genetically modified to withstand Round-Up’s main ingredients - and some remains in the final products. Research has showed that GMO crops have but 43% of the nutrients of identical non-GMO crops. I guess the industry just figures people will have to eat more. :face_with_raised_eyebrow:


Ours do too! This also includes all types of milk/cream containers, carton or plastic. These are all refundable. They also like them uncrushed here.
The paper, cardboard, newspaper, etc goes into the blue bin.

I believe it is tied to the “phone person”…but until we send her to the south, we are going to take the brunt of the situation.

I think everyone should “de-package” any products from the grocery store, Walmart, the phone store, the liquor store, and leave the packaging with the store. Soon enough they will get fed up and demand manufacturers change their ways.

:rofl:Can you imagine someone opening the cardboard box of 12 beer at the store and putting them in their reusable shopping bag and leaving the box at the liquor store!!!


Big pay out given in that lawsuit. They are linked to bladder cancer.


US attorneys’ ads revised it to say only commercial workers.


I think the first court victory was for a man who developed Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma. That was in California. There are other illnesses caused by it as well. You would have thought Bayer bought a migraine when they bought Monsanto, but their bigwig called these lawsuits “… just a headache.” Apparently he’s not too worried about them - whether they have to pay out or not. Nice… (sarcastic).


That is terrible. Not a company name we like to talk about around here.

EDIT: Here is the big story that was in our province 20 years ago, but farmers here still remember the battle.


@TerriB, I came across this article about recycling glass. It explains a lot about windows and other types of glass that should not be recycled and why. Very informative with logical explanations.


That is well explained! One I didn’t know about until recently was whether you could recycle drinking glasses. You expect they are made similar to glass pop bottles, beer bottles, wine bottles, but they are not.
A friend and I just had a conversation (and there was one on the news) about Pyrex and how the new company is making it slightly different than the old company and they are shattering in the oven, without warning. (Nothing to recycle then, and you have lost whatever you were cooking!!!).

We have Household Hazardous waste recycling in one location that takes these items:

  • Acid - battery acid, toilet bowl cleaner, sulphuric acid, hydrochloric acid
  • Adhesives - contact cement, resin, glue, sealer, caulking
  • Aerosols - hair spray, insect repellant, lubricant spray, furniture cleaner, bear spray
  • Automotive - used oil, oil filters, antifreeze, carburetor cleaner, batteries, fuel, windshield wiper solution, transmission fluid, brake fluid, empty oil containers and pails
  • Batteries - alkali, dry cell, NiCad, lithium, lead-acid (automotive)
  • Cleaners - floor, carpet, clothing, oven, glass, car wax, disinfectant, aluminum cleaner
  • Cylinders - propane, helium, oxygen, acetylene, fire extinguishers
  • Corrosives - drain cleaner, engine degreaser, ammonia, battery acid, sulfuric acid
  • Fuels - gasoline, diesel, kerosene, oil/gas mixture
  • Light Bulbs & Ballasts - fluorescent light ballasts (with or without PCBs), light bulbs
  • Mercury - mercury, mercury thermometers
  • Oxidizing Chemicals - chlorine, bleach, pool chemicals, fertilizer, hydrogen peroxide
  • Paint Here and at Sarcan
  • Pesticides & Fertilizers - pesticides, herbicides, insecticides, rodenticides, fertilizer
  • Pharmaceuticals - prescription drugs, medicines (no needles, sharps or biological waste)
  • Propane Cylinders - barbeque cylinders (20 lb), camp cylinders (1 lb)
  • Solvents - varsol, paint thinner, naphtha, acetone, toluene, xylene, alcohol, benzene
  • Other Materials - asphalt sealers, roofing tar, detergents, photographic chemicals, pigments, dyes, hair colour, nail polish, nail polish remover, lead, mothballs, pet supplies, phenol, pine oil, scouring powder, spot remover, septic tank chemicals, shoe polish, wood preservatives, household products containing microbeads (e.g., hand soap)

I try to collect several in one box and they have drop off days in parking lots around the city.
Every little bit helps!