Plastic is a ubiquitous, petroleum-based material used for many types of food and storage containers and easily recyclable. In Massachusetts, most plastic containers are accepted and distributed to recycling centers by municipal recycling programs. Businesses should check with their city, town, and building to determine what materials can and cannot be recycled, collected, and brought to recycling centers.
Glass is also used for containers and bottles and is one of the easiest materials to recycle because of its purity. Most glass waste from offices comes from glass bottles. Some bottles may also be returned to retail locations and be redeemed for cash.
Plastics buried in a landfill can take centuries to break down, and sometimes the residue does not biodegrade completely. In the ocean, plastic breaks down from contact with waves, currents, salt water, and sun into tiny pellets. These are ingested by small organisms, which can die from starvation since plastic pellets are not digestible. This has dire consequences for the entire marine food chain. Recycling plastic keeps prevents harmful contamination and conserves raw materials, energy, and water needed to create virgin plastic.
Read more about the widespread benefits of recycling plastics.
Challenge Participants Currently Adopting This Practice
Financing Options, Incentives, And Rebates
Directory of Recyclers by Type in Massachusetts
In The News
- “InterContinental Boston Elevates Recycling Rate Significantly” Green Lodging News, April 2011
- “Massachusetts Town Bans Plastic Water Bottles” Time, January 2013