It's a Green, Broke & Living in Kits Recycling Tips double-header today! Slightly less exciting than a HNIC double-header, but slightly more important (unless the Canucks are playing, in which case it's debatable).
Q: What plastic types / #'s can you recycle in Vancouver blue bins?
A: Just #1, 2, 4 and 5. Vancouver isn't exactly the most progressive city in terms of plastics recycling.
Currently, only numbers 1 (PET/PETE - polyethylene terephthalate), 2 (HDPE - high density polyethylene), 4 (LDPE - low density polyethylene) and 5 (PP - polypropylene) can be recycled in our curbside blue boxes.
If you'd like to further educate yourself on each of the categories, here's a terrific website to help you out (complete with pretty pictures of not-so-pretty plastics): http://www.thedailygreen.com/green-homes/latest/recycling-symbols-plastics-460321
In Vancouver, we can chuck #1, #2, #4 and #5 into the blue box no trouble, but what about #3, #6 and #7? Why not those?
I just posted in the last Green, Broke & Living in Kits recycling tip that polystyrene trays (#6) aren't recycled in the city. #3 is the dreaded PVC or "polyvinyl chloride", and it has a whole host of issues, primarily surrounding the "chloride" part of it's chemical composition.
#7 is a catch-all category for "other", which pretty much tells you the demand for which is slim to none. What manufacturer would pay for a conglomerate of "other" plastic types mixed together? Hardly a recipe for consistency.
So here's the bottom line(s):
DON'T BUY PLASTIC WHENEVER YOU HAVE AN ALTERNATIVE CHOICE (and there's always an option - for inspiration on going plastic-free, visit the brilliant Plastic Manners blog)
NEVER, EVER, EVER BUY PVC ANYTHING (#3). Especially clothing. I don't care if you have a fetish - find a new one! It's nasty, and I still maintain that one should never wear any garment whose washing instructions are "wipe clean with damp cloth"!
|Is this recyclable in Vancouver? "PP" stands for polypropylene = #5. YES!|
CHECK THOSE LABELS CAREFULLY:
#1, 2, 4 AND 5 CAN DO THE RECYCLING JIVE, BUT #3, 6, AND 7 END UP IN LANDFILL HEAVEN!