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What Are Single Use Plastics?

What Are Single-Use Plastics?

Single-use plastics (SUPs), also referred to as disposable plastics, are used only once before they become trash or recycled. These include, among other items:

  • Plastic shopping bags
  • Straws
  • Coffee stirrers
  • Keurig K-Cups
  • Water bottles
  • Most food packaging (such as tubs and lids, etc)
  • Polystyrene (found in cups, plates, take-out containers and various packaging such as Styrofoam
  • Cutlery
  • Plastic plates
  • Sandwich bags
  • Six-pack rings
  • Cotton bud sticks made of plastic
  • Plastic balloon sticks

How Recycling Diverts Them From Landfills and Water Sources

When recycled, they are recovered and categorized, and then sent for re-processing. They now have a new use as a new item and are not in the landfill. SUPs can be turned into a multitude of new materials such as plastic lumber, t-shirts, fleece, sleeping bags, carpet, storage containers, brooms and more. Other items are difficult to recycle and are currently garbage, but alternatives for them are always welcome.

Quinte Waste Solutions does not ship to China and most of our recovered materials are reused right here in Ontario. For example, all PET plastic we receive is sent to Ice River Springs – who, since 1995, has been diverting recyclables from going to landfill. They developed a new green bottle made of 100% plastic.

Recycling is a completely doable practice. Any bit of care for the environment requires individual attention and action, that includes ‘proper disposal’ such as organized recycling. Remember that when you ‘throw something away’, it never really goes away. It has to go somewhere. By putting it in your Blue Box, we can ensure that its purpose doesn’t end there. A typical family of four can minimize waste by more than two tonnes each year, just be the easy task of recycling.

Working together, we are saving the environment, one single-use plastic at a time.

 

** Quinte Waste Solutions does not accept all the items on the above-noted list. Please email us at info@quinterecycling.org to ask about any specific item.