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Recycling turns materials that would otherwise become waste into valuable resources. Collecting used bottles, cans, and newspapers and taking them to the curb or to a collection facility is just the first in a series of steps that generates a host of financial, environmental, and social returns. For more information see the Recycle Guidelines
Benefits of Recycling
Recycling protects and expands U.S. manufacturing jobs and increases U.S. competitiveness.
Recycling reduces the need for landfilling and incineration.
Recycling prevents pollution caused by the manufacturing of products from virgin materials.
Recycling saves energy.
Recycling conserves natural resources such as timber, water, and minerals.
Recycling helps sustain the environment for future generations.
Help Des Moines Reach It's Goal to Recycle 50% of Everything!
In 2009 Des Moines residents recycled 24% of everything.
- 9,395 tons of recyclables through the blue cart program
- 7,053 tons of yard waste was collected curbside
- 3,539 appliances were recycled at SCRUB events - 247 tons of material
- 61,240 tons were delivered to the landfill
Currently 40% of everything going to the landfill can be recycled. There are things being missed, even by seasoned recyclers.
Paper is the largest recyclable material going to the landfill. If it tears it is a candidate for recycling but do not include contaminated boxes or paper, such as paper towels or napkins, hardcover books, photos, or wax coated cartons. Since 67% of total paper can be recycled, begin by recycling paper products such as:
Junk Mail & Other Paper Products (anything that tears)
Paperback & phone books
Cartonboard (flatten cereal and shoe boxes with plastic bags removed)
Shredded paper used for packing