Recycling operation expands list


RUMFORD – That empty window washing fluid bottle or takeout salad dish doesn’t have to be thrown in the garbage any longer.

The Northern Oxford Regional Transfer Station in Mexico can take plastics with PETE No. 1 or PP No. 5 printed on the bottom.

“The market has opened up for it. The market didn’t used to have the process, but now it does,” said Patricia Duguay, director of the River Valley Healthy Communities Coalition and former recycling coordinator.

The transfer station has been accepting plastics marked with HDPE No. 2 for years. This included such things as milk, shampoo and water containers.

The new, shiny plastics marked No. 1 or No. 5 include such items as window cleaner bottles, soda bottles, and rigid food containers like those that takeout salads come in.

And when residents bring their recyclables to the transfer station, they don’t have to separate the different kinds of plastics.

Making recycling easy is a major goal of the transfer station and healthy communities coalition.

Another change that will ease recycling is the way papers are to be separated.

No longer do people have to sort all their paper products into four piles. That has been reduced to just two, Duguay said.

One bin will take cardboard, paperboard such as that used for cereals, paper towel tubes and egg boxes, and brown paper bags. The other will accept newspapers, white and colored office paper, construction paper, computer paper, and other similar products.

“We want to keep it as simple as we can,” Duguay said.

Recycling not only helps the environment, she said, but it also reduces the cost to dispose of garbage.

In 2005, the local transfer station disposed of 9,621 tons of garbage at a cost of $529,562. Another 1,393 tons of recyclables were also collected at the station, bringing in $93,122.

We’ve been running at about the same level for several years. We need to increase our recycling,” Duguay said.

She plans to talk to area groups to let people know about the new items acceptable for recycling. So far, a presentation will be made in Canton to Canton Extension Club on Wednesday, and at the RVHCC networking meeting Tuesday.

Anyone with questions about recycling or any group that would like a presentation may contact Duguay at 364-7408 or contact her at [email protected]