Campus News

Recycling Made Easy

July 30, 2013

Bridget Flynn

Recycling bin

Recycling at Oberlin College—and throughout the city of Oberlin—just got more comprehensive. A wider variety of materials—most notably plastics marked #1 to #7 (previously just #1 and #2 were allowed), cartons, and aseptic containers—can be recycled at the renovated Lorain County Resource Recovery Facility.

Oberlin College students, faculty, and staff can begin participating by following these guidelines:

Accepted materials

• Plastic food and beverage containers marked #1-7
• Cartons including juice boxes, soy milk, boxed wine, and broth cartons – both shelf-stable and refrigerated
• Plastic detergent and soap containers marked #1-7
• Newspaper, cardboard, paperboard (like cereal boxes), phone books, magazines, and junk mail
• Aluminum, steel, and bimetal food and beverage cans
• Glass bottles and jars

NOT accepted

• Plastic bags, plastic wrap, juice pouches, toys, flower pots, garden hoses
• Styrofoam, aluminum foil, pie tins
• Hazardous waste
• Containers with excessive food or liquids still in the container
• Miscellaneous items, such as light bulbs, Christmas lights, plastic furniture, pots and pans, ceramics and china

For the college, all materials can be comingled; however, paper should be sorted separately where paper-only bins exist.

For curbside recycling pickup, Oberlin residents and businesses should continue sorting plastics, glass, and aluminum using the black bucket system, paper (in a paper bag), and flattened corrugated cardboard.

Other Considerations: Please note that cartons should be placed in the plastics bin, not in the paper bin. Even though the cartons are being collected for the paper they contain, they need to be processed separately since they contain polyethylene and aluminum. Please also remember to remove the caps and straws from these containers.

Got “Not Accepted” Materials to Recycle?

Collection centers and other avenues to recycle materials not accepted in campus bins or at curb side exist in Oberlin and throughout Lorain County. In addition to the options noted below is a quick reference guide on the city of Oberlin’s Refuse and Recycling webpage.

Miscellaneous: The Lorain County Solid Waste Management District Collection Center, located at 540 S. Abbe Road in Elyria, accepts a wide range and variety of materials.
Batteries: Wilder Desk, Philips Gym, and Facilities Operations (in the Service Building) accept all types of batteries for recycling.
Light Bulbs: Compact florescent light bulbs (CFLs) can be dropped off at Oberlin City Hall (85 S. Main St.), the city’s Finance Department (69 S. Main St.), Oberlin Municipal Light and Power System (OMLPS) (289 S. Professor), and Watson Hardware (26 S Main St.). Watsons Hardware collects tubular lighting – any kind of wattage bulb, up to 8 ft.
Paper: Take the extra step to recycle newspapers, magazines, catalogs, junk mail, office and school papers, envelopes, phone books, boxboard (like cereal boxes and cake mix boxes), and cardboard at one of the several green and yellow ABITIBI Paper Retriever Recycling bins located around town and on campus (between Mudd and Service Building; behind Stevenson). Please make sure boxboard and cardboard boxes are flattened and do not contain any remaining food. The agency sponsoring the bin earns money based on the quantity of paper recycled.
Plastic bags: Plastic shopping bags can be taken to most stores for recycling, including DrugMart in Oberlin, Giant Eagle, Target, Oberlin IGA, and Walmart Super Center.
Textiles (gently used clothes, shoes, bedding, etc.): The Free Store (basement of Asia House) on Oberlin College campus; Planet Aid bins in the Oberlin IGA parking lot and all around northeast Ohio; and Goodwill Industries at 46078 U.S. 20 in Oberlin and other locations.

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