Your local government recycling
and solid waste coordinator should be knowledgeable about the recycling
collection points nearest you. The local Yellow Pages may include recycling
centers under the heading “recycling” or “scrap metals” or
other materials. Keep America Beautiful (KAB) has about 60 affiliates across
Georgia which are supported by Keep Georgia Beautiful, headquartered at
DCA. Many of the KAB affiliates sponsor recycling programs. Information
on the affiliates can be accessed by linking to Keep
Georgia Beautiful. Presented below are opportunities for individuals
to bring certain materials to collection points at nearby merchants. Remember
that these stores are more likely to support collection if you patronize
APPAREL, APPLIANCES, TOYS, BOOKS, RECREATIONAL EQUIPMENT, FURNITURE,
The Salvation Army, Goodwill, the Kidney Foundation, the City of Atlanta
Bureau of Cultural Affairs’ Materials for the Arts Program (phone 404-853-3272),
and other thrift operations will accept donations of these and other items
if they are still of decent quality. Pickup can be arranged, and donations
may be tax deductible. Check the yellow pages for the nearest store. Otherwise,
see if a local church, school, charity, swap operation, or acquaintance can
make use of the surplus item. Another option for apparel is textile recyclers.
There are a few listed in the directory that collect materials and either
export them to third world countries or sell them as rags.
Individuals (and corporations, too) can donate unwanted vehicles to the National
Kidney Foundation of Georgia (NKFG). As soon as the paperwork is complete,
NKFG coordinates a convenient time to pick up the vehicle, free of charge.
The vehicle is sold at an auto auction and NKFG uses the funds to fight
kidney disease. The donor receives a deed of gift and a thank you letter.
Donors may qualify for a tax deduction. For more information about KIDNEY
CARS, call (770) 452-1539, ext. 18, or outside metro Atlanta, call 1-800-633-2339.
BATTERIES - HOUSEHOLD
There are no household battery recyclers in the state. However, there is
a recycler in Tampa, Florida, called Quicksilver Environmental. They will
accept all household batteries; the generator pays the shipping and handling.
For more information, call 800-376-7888. Rechargeable batteries can be
recycled at many local retailers. For more information call the Portable
Rechargeable Battery Association at (404) 412-8826 or 800-8-BATTERY.
BATTERIES - LEAD-ACID (OTHERWISE KNOWN AS AUTO BATTERIES)
Stores that stock or repair lead-acid batteries will usually accept your
battery. Heavy for their size and potentially dangerous to handle, lead-acid
batteries pose an environmental threat due to their acid and lead content
and are banned from many solid waste collection programs and all municipal
solid waste landfills.
Find out information on recycling your used electronic equipment from
your home or business.
Most often used as a packaging material to protect merchandise, individuals
encounter old corrugated cardboard (OCC) in box form. OCC is evident by
studying box edges for two or more liners sandwiching a corrugated medium.
Some commercial establishments that bale OCC, such as grocery stores, may
accept OCC scraps if they are brought to the storage area and instructions
are followed precisely.
DRY-CLEANING BAGS AND HANGERS
Inquire at your local dry-cleaners for return of bags and hangers.
The Gift of Sight is an eyeglass recycling program sponsored
by Lenscrafters and Lions Club International to provide free eyecare
and used glasses to needy people throughout the world. For more
information, call 800-541-LENS.
Most local government recycling programs have added glass (clear, green,
and brown) to their curbside or drop-off programs. Almost every market
for glass requires that it be separated by color. Glass typically not accepted
in residential recycling programs include window panes, ceramics, light
bulbs, ovenware, mirrors, crystal, or fiberglass. Contact your local recycling
coordinator for more information.
Many grocery stores permit return of the same plastic or paper grocery bags
used in their check-out lines. Another option is to bring your own canvas
or net bag for shopping. That way, you do not have to worry about disposing
of or recycling an unwanted plastic bag.
It is becoming more common to find drop-off containers for magazines (next
to newspaper collection bins) at schools, churches, and other similar institutions.
In addition, many communities have added magazines to their curbside and
MILK JUGS AND SODA BOTTLES
Many grocery stores permit return of these plastic bottles and many local
governments include them in their recycling program. Be sure to rinse these
well and remove the lids before recycling.
Some local government recycling programs have added mixed paper to their
curbside or drop-off program. Contact your local recycling coordinator
for more information.
MOTOR OIL AND COOLANTS (ANTIFREEZE)
Many oil change stations and retailers that sell these products will accept
used motor oil or antifreeze (or coolant) from “do-it-yourselfers”.
You cannot recycle used oil if it has been mixed with used antifreeze.
Some places may charge a small fee to accept oil or antifreeze, or at least
ask you to purchase supplies there. Also, check with your local government.
Many offer residents the option of disposing their used oil at a drop off
location in their community. Motor oil and coolants are two important materials
to recycle from your household because of their high toxicity and potential
for contamination. For example, one gallon of motor oil has the potential
to spoil one million gallons of water! Please remember to properly dispose
or recycle these two items instead of dumping them in the ground; they
are usually banned from solid waste collection programs.
It is common to find drop-off containers for old newspaper (ONP) at schools,
churches, and other similar institutions. Proceeds from these collections
often benefit the host. Many grocery stores in Georgia have newspaper collection
bins in the parking lot.
PAINT AND OTHER CONSTRUCTION MATERIALS
The City of Atlanta Bureau of Cultural Affairs’ Materials for the Arts
Program (404-853-3272) receives and directs surplus, unwanted, or depreciated
goods of decent quality to non-profit arts organizations, individual artists,
and social service and educational groups offering arts programs. This includes
hundreds of items in acceptable condition, including paint, clay, canvas,
tools, furniture, and office equipment. Pickup service is free (in Atlanta);
donations may be tax deductible. Also contact local school or theater groups
about donating extra paint and supplies.
Typically used to protect shipping objects. The commonly known “foam
peanuts,” if not reused or given to a nearby merchandiser, can be returned
to Mail Boxes, Etc. and 3,400 other shipping stores that participate in the
nationwide collection program. Call the toll free hotline 800-828-2214 for
the nearest location. Other types of polystyrene (e.g. cups and plates) are
being collected for recycling in some local government recycling programs.
Contact your local recycling coordinator for more information. Last, there
are polystyrene recyclers located in Georgia. See listings for more information.
Discarded motor vehicle tires can be returned, for a fee, to tire retailers.
Tires are also being collected in some local government recycling programs.
Contact your local recycling coordinator for more information. Banned from
landfills unless shredded, scrap tires that are illegally dumped become
breeding vessels for mosquitoes and other pests.
STEEL CANS, LIDS AND CLOSURES
The Steel Can Recycling Information System (800-YES-1-CAN) will provide the
nearest collection point for steel cans in your area. Otherwise, ask nearby
ferrous metal collectors in this directory if they accept steel cans, lids
and closures. Also, many local governments accept steel cans in their recycling
program. Contact your local recycling coordinator for more information.
Toner cartridges for laser printers, plain paper fax machines, and certain
copy machines can be sold to recyclers. Check this directory and the Yellow
Pages or see if the cartridge manufacturer you are currently buying from
will accept returns.
YARD TRIMMINGS AND FOOD SCRAPS
DCA, your local recycling coordinator, your local KAB Affiliate, local government
public works department, or Cooperative Extension Agent has information
on composting your yard trimmings and organic scraps at home. Effective
September 1, 1996, all yard trimmings were banned from lined municipal
solid waste landfills. As a result, many communities have established chipping/mulching
programs for local residents. Contact your local recycling coordinator
for more details.