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Recycling Bins: Be mindful of what's deposited

Plastic bags and styrofoam are a big problem

While residents of the Gallatin Valley have the convenience of dropping off items at recycle bins, including at 150 E. Railroad Avenue in Three Forks, county officials remind them to be mindful of what they deposit.

According to Logan Landfill Recycling and Outreach Educator Patty Howard, there is a lot of contamination in the recycling bins.

The bins accept cardboard, mixed paper, aluminum and steel cans, and #1 and #2 plastic bottles.

"People either think they know what can be put in the bins or hope someone will figure it out after they put it into the bins. Clam shells or the hinged plastic containers are put into the plastic bins quite regularly. However, they are not a bottle or jug shape. Therefore, they are not recyclable in our area and should not be put into the plastic recycling bins," Howard said.

Another problem encountered at the ten county-wide recycling bins is plastic bags.

"People put their recyclable items in plastic bags, and then they deposit the items and the bag into the bins. The recyclable items, such as aluminum cans, need to be taken out of the plastic bag before putting them into the bins. Shredded paper is the only item that can be placed into the bins in a plastic bag," Howard said.

With Christmas less than a month away, Howard said contamination does increase during the holidays with Styrofoam and wrapping paper.

"It would be best to put all wrapping paper in the trash rather than potentially contaminate the paper bins. Styrofoam should always go into the trash," Howard said.

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