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How to Recycle Plastic Water Bottles

How to Recycle Plastic Water Bottles

Refilling a high-quality stainless steel bottle from your water cooler or filter is always our recommended choice for sustainable water consumption. However, we fully understand that there are times that this simply is not feasible and you must turn to single-serve plastic water bottles as the only healthy alternative to satisfy your thirst. Handled mindfully, this option can be a viable one offering you a smart beverage choice and landfills free of plastic water bottles.

Billions of water bottles are used every year throughout the world. A small portion of them is recaptured and recycled as they were intended to be. Water bottles can be melted down into plastic pellets, which are then sold to companies to produce carpets, clothing, furniture and much more. Plastic bottles are an essential part of this supply chain and you must provide them with none other than curbside or drop off recycling. To assure that you are properly recycling your single use water bottles follow these simple tips:

Leave the caps on.

Water bottle caps are only recyclable in most municipalities if they are on twisted tightly onto the bottle. Separated caps reek havoc on equipment sending them to the landfill and production to a halt. To prevent this always replace the cap once you have finished drinking your water.

Crush your bottle. 

To properly crush a water bottle, remove the cap, squeeze out all of the air and then replace the cap. The trapped suction will allow the bottle to stay in its new compact condition leaving more room in your bin for other recyclables. In addition, space is saved at the processing facility, reducing the need for expansion and enabling more valuable recycling to occur.

No need to rinse.

Although other bottles, cans, and jars should be rinsed there is no need to do so with water bottles. However, they should be emptied and free of any noticeable liquid.

Don’t bag ’em.

Do not place your water bottles in a bag or any other recyclables for that matter. Bagged items prevent the process from being completed properly or slow down the system. The bags cannot be recycled and will rob plants of man-hours removing them. Water bottles should be placed in your recycling bin or a public bin free of any confinements.

Recycle the outer packaging.

If you purchase bottled water by the case, the plastic packaging that holds them cannot be placed in your recycling bin. However, it can be dropped off at participating grocery stores such as Heinen’s or Dave’s to be processed along with any other plastic film or grocery bags.

Think of your water bottle, it wants to be more, do more than end its life in a landfill. From flip-flops to backpacks to decking your water bottle has an entire second life to live. It is up to you to make this happen. Only small portions of plastic bottles get recycled, additionally, only a small portion of anything gets recycled. At the pace we are consuming and tossing without a thought we are headed for uncharted danger. Let’s head it off at the pass starting with our convenient and often necessary water bottles. Let’s show the world that we can have our healthy thirst quencher and drink it too!


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