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Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!

Here are some tips, to help you reduce, reuse and recycle in Santa Monica (from the City’s Resource, Recovery and Recycling website).

Blue Bin image


Remember, only clean materials can go in the blue bins. Clean your recyclables before they go in the blue bins. Materials that can’t be cleaned because they are soiled with food or oils cannot go in the blue bins.

Accepted Materials:
● Plastic bottles and containers. All plastic bottles, jars and tubs that have a number 1-5 imprinted inside a triangle (the ‘triangle’ is called a mobius loop). Please rinse all containers. Dispose of small plastic and foil lids, caps, pumps and sprayers. Recycle tubs with their lid attached.
● Glass bottles and jars. Remove lids and rinse; recycle metal lids and discard plastic ones.
● Metal cans and foil. All food and beverage cans (please rinse). Clean foil wrap and foil containers (no lids unless they are 100% aluminium).
● Paper containers. Tetra Pak cartons (juice boxes, soup/stock cartons, etc.) – dispose of straws, plastic wrap, etc. Gable top cartons like the ones used for milk, cream and juice. Cardboard cans and boxes with a plastic lining like the ones used for potato chips, frozen juice, household cleansers and dishwashing detergent.
● Household paper. Newspaper & inserts, magazines, calendars. Envelopes (with or without window), office paper, ad mail. Gift wrap & wrapping paper made of 100% paper. Paper towel cores, paper egg cartons.
● Cardboard. Boxboard boxes (cereal, shoes, etc.) – remove and discard plastic windows and non-paper inserts. Please flatten. Corrugated cardboard – flatten, must be no larger than 9′ x 9′.
● Plastic Bags. Grocery/shopping type. Bread, produce, frozen vegetable bags. Plastic film wrap from cases of water, pop, etc. Dry cleaning bags. Garden supply plastic bags (soil, mulch, etc.).

NOT Accepted
Do not recycle these items:
● Styrofoam packaging, cups and trays.
● Food scraps.
● Pizza boxes (they go in the Green Bin).
● Plastic clamshell packaging, commonly used for baking products and strawberries.
● Disposable party cups.
● Clothing, shoes, luggage.
● Plastic bags that don’t meet above criteria.
● Household appliances, toys, CD cases, plastic hangers.
● Broken glass bottles or jars.
● Drinking glasses, ceramics, plates, dishes, mugs, cookware, etc.
● Window & mirror glass.
● Light bulbs.
● Paper towels, tissues, napkins, plates, etc.
● Paper take-out food containers, plastic tableware.
● Potato chip & snack food bags.
● Plastic coated paper such as pet food bags.
● Metal coat hangers, cutlery, pots/pans, screws, nails, etc.
● Propane cylinders.
● Aerosol cans.
● Sharps.

Green Bin image


Green composting bins are for food scraps, food-soiled paper, or plant and yard waste.

● While preparing meals or when cleaning the refrigerator, separate any food scraps and always scrape any extra food from your plate into the compost bin.
● Use a kitchen pail, a reusable plastic tub or any compostable paper container such as take-out boxes or paper bags.
Include food-soiled paper such as coffee cups and filters, paper plates, napkins, paper towels, waxed/parchment paper, and take-out containers. Freezing food scraps or wrapping them in newspaper can prevent leaks and odors.
● Empty food scraps, food-soiled paper and plant debris into green organics bin. By collecting food scraps, we’ll reduce waste and create compost for local farms and gardens.