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Volume 16, Issue 47 - November 20 - November 26, 2008
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What to Do with All Those Lids?

Are they trash, or can they be recycled?

by Dotty Holcomb Doherty

Metal lids on glass jars; unnumbered screw-on lids on water bottles. Many more lids. Should we put these in the recycling bin?

“Yes,” said Matt Diehl, the customer relations officer for the Anne Arundel County Department of Public Works. “You can recycle all lids. Removal from the jar or bottle is optional.”

He also wants you to know that recycling is easy nowadays. Labels do not have to be removed, and jars and bottles need not be cleaned.

Bill Teter, Calvert County’s recycling coordinator, echoed Diehl. Recycle all lids; removal is unnecessary; leave labels on cans.

“The market has changed,” Teter explained. “Now all lids are removed at the processing facility.”

But he recommends rinsing out the jars, cans and bottles, especially in the summer, as the sugars attract bees.

Recycle all lids: exactly the answer I wanted to hear.

The news gets even better.

Anne Arundel County is now recycling almost all plastics and even more of our usual throwaways, including plastic wrap, milk and orange juice cartons and aluminum foil. Teter hopes to similarly expand Calvert County recycling in January.

With all this recycling, and a compost pile for food leftovers, hardly anything needs to go in the trash anymore.

In Anne Arundel, you can now recycle almost any plastic item — except vinyl siding, PVC pipe, paint containers and bottles containing hazardous materials.

The expanded list for curbside recyclables includes:

• Plastics

• Plastic bags and shrink wrap (secure in plastic bag)

• Plastic cups, plates and utensils

• Plastic buckets

• Storage totes

• Plastic flower pots

• Plastic furniture

• Trash cans and old recycling bins

• Plastic toys, pools and playsets

• Paper

• Milk and juice jugs and boxes

• Metals

• Aluminum foil and pans

For more information:

• Anne Arundel County Recycling:; 410-222-7951.

• Calvert County Recycling:; 800-560-1004.


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