7 Items that NEED to be Recycled

Recycling has been a major staple of American life since the late 80’s into the early 90’s, when the government headed up a major push for our nation to consume less and reuse more. A drive through most neighborhoods in American on garbage day will produce hundreds of blue bins of all shapes and sizes filled with glass, bottles, cans, and paper. Are we really doing all we can by stopping our recycling there? The EPA estimates that nearly 75 percent of solid waste produced by Americans is recyclable. Check out these items that NEED to be recycled to keep our planet healthy and clean!

Aluminum Cans

How many times do you find yourself finishing up a can of soda and throwing it in the nearest garbage can? Next time, make sure that aluminum can ends up in a recycling bin! Aluminum cans are 100% recyclable and making new cans from recycled aluminum uses 95% less energy than making brand-new aluminum cans.


Sure, we may bundle up our old newspapers to put out with the recycling, but what about all of the other paper products that end up in our garbage? The EPA reports that paper and paper products make up nearly 1/3 of all waste in the United States. Recycling paper conserves resources (trees and water), saves energy, and doesn’t clog up landfills. One ton of recycled paper saves 17 trees and 7,000 gallons of water!


A broken vase or glass gets swept into a dustpan and dumped in the nearest trashcan most of the time. Did you know that recycled glass uses 50% less energy than brand new glass during production? The statistics for using recycled glass verses new glass are mind-blowing; 20% less air pollution, 50% less water pollution and reduction of mining waste. Unlike other materials, glass can be recycled endlessly without it’s quality degenerating.

Automotive Goods

Automobiles require tons of resources to build, and even more to maintain over their life. When caring for your car, there are many things that can be recycled, such as old car batteries, oil filters, and used tires. Be sure to not dispose of any fluids with your regular recycling, as contaminants can ruin entire loads of recyclables. Check out RecycleNation.com for a location that accepts automotive recyclables.

Construction Waste

Whether a structure is going up, or coming down, there is sure to be byproduct and waste produced during the job. Items like bricks, drywall, and wood can all be recycled if disposed of properly. At Cali Carting, all of our containers are responsibility disposed of, and all recyclable goods are sorted through and sent to the proper facilities. We also provide recycling reports for LEED certified projects!


Take a moment and think about how many items in your home run off of battery power. Then think of how many batteries you may go through a year to keep those items in operation. Batteries that end up in the garbage can be incredibly harmful, as many types contain harmful chemicals such as Mercury and Nickel Cadmium. One Nickel Cadmium battery from a cell phone or a power tool has enough chemicals in it to pollute 150,000 gallons of water!

Holiday Lights

With the recent popularity boom of LED lights for holiday decoration and Christmas trees, many people are finding themselves with tons of extra strands of incandescent lights. What many people are unaware of, is not only to LED lights give you a better “look”, but they always save money and the environment. Lighting your house up with 10 strands of incandescent light strands produced over 300 pounds of CO2 PER NIGHT, compared to just 30 pounds of CO2 with LED. Many stores that sell holiday goods have a trade-in system for your old lights where they may offer a discount on a new purchase of LED lights.


Many have called America the “throw-it-away” nation, where everything we consumer is used in a one and done type setting. As costs of goods rises along with the American population, our nation will no longer be able to sustain this type of consumption. A great way to start to reverse this dangerous practice is to begin recycling efficiently. We have lots of room to improve, as 75% of garbage can actually be recycled. Next time you go to throw something in the trash, take a second and check out the packaging to see if it can be recycled instead! Every little bit helps!

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