Waste Management Encourages Customers to Secure Recyclable Items - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Waste Management Encourages Customers to Secure Recyclable Items

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Northern Nevada can get its fair share of wind, and that can blow unsecured trash and recyclables throughout the neighborhood. If materials are left outside of the trash or recycle bin, they should be bagged or bundled.

"All the recyclables need to be inside a container or what we call a toter, and because of the high winds, we have here in northern Nevada, it's much better to have the area clean," Rigo Martinez, Recycle Route Manager for Waste Management said.

If there is not enough room in the recycle bin, many customers will leave extra material like cardboard next to it.  While they might expect the drivers to pick it up, it is actually considered excess waste at that point. 

"Which we're not allowed to take if it's not inside the container," Martinez said. "If customers have any excess, they're required to put excess stickers and the trash/garbage truck will come by and pick them up."

That means cardboard that could have been recycled will end up in the landfill.  Martinez says it is a better option to drop excess recyclables at the East Commercial Row recycle center, just west of Sutro Street.  The service is free, and it is an easy option for people like Reno resident Bill Dinkins.

"To recycle, to get rid of this stuff," Dinkins said. "I like to help the environment but it's also free to dump it."

"Sometimes there's not enough space in the single stream and I do the best I can to do recycling," David Chaidez, Reno resident said. "So, whatever doesn't fit, I just come by on my way to work and drop some stuff off."

The WM transfer station will accept any kind of recyclable material, including glass, paper, plastic, aluminum and tin.  Scrap metal should be dropped off at a designated on-site drop-off location.  WM officials say it has had customer complaints because of scattered materials around the neighborhood but that reducing debris requires effort from drivers and residents.

"We all have to work as a team to keep the environment clean," Martinez said. "If you have excess trash, we recommend putting them in bundles and put them next to their garbage container."

Chaidez says he does his part to keep his neighborhood clean.  Along with his recyclable material, he picks up others that are scattered because of the wind.

"I found some plastic containers that were blowing around by the wind and since they don't fit too easily in the bin, just decided to come drop them off here in person," Chaidez said.

Since most apartment complexes do not have single stream recycling bins, officials say dropping off recyclable items at the transfer station is also an alternative to throwing them in the trash.

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