Do not recycle these common plastic recycling contaminants
Submitted by Glen Garrick, Sustainability Manager, Lower Mainland Facilities Management
Sometimes it’s not enough to simply consider the material an item is made from — such as hard plastic — and know whether it can be recycled.
Why are some hard plastic items not recyclable?
Some hard plastic items can’t be recycled because of their intended use in a health care setting. Health care generates biomedical waste, which poses a higher risk to recycling and health care staff.
What if the items are clean, empty, or unused?
If a hard plastic item is intended for the collection or storage of bodily waste, it must be perceived as a potential health risk even if it has been emptied or cleaned, or not used. It cannot be recycled.
Containers intended for bodily fluids, like urinals, are sometimes used for other (non-body) purposes. However, recycling staff — who sort the containers by hand — won’t know how the container was used. Therefore, all such containers must be treated as if used for their intended purpose. They must be disposed of in garbage bins.
Why is this so important?
Correctly sorting health care waste allows us to:
- keep staff safe
- prevent recyclable materials from being contaminated with non-recyclable waste
- manage waste disposal costs
- comply with waste regulations
Which hard plastic items belong in the garbage?
The following plastic items can't be recycled and belong in garbage bins, even if empty, clean, or used for non-bodily specimens:
- specimen containers
- syringes (even without the needle)
Where can I go to for more information?
Visit GreenCare Community’s Recycling Questions page for more information on which items can be recycled.
- Contact Sustainability Consultant Marianne Dawson at Marianne.Dawson@fraserhealth.ca
- Or contact GreenCare at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ALSO IN THIS ISSUE
- Japanese couple celebrates Mother's Day with the birth of their "little cherry blossom" at St. Paul's new maternity clinic
- We're celebrating National Nursing Week - #YESThisIsNursing
- Exploring PHC's nursing leadership paths
- The unveiling of the Spiritual Journey of the Shaman painting
- New site at St. Paul's helps save lives
- How a lost brooch became the final piece to a touching wedding blessing in the CICU
- "Keeping the Light Shining" - Capstone Conference held at Vandusen's Floral Hall
- Eye clinic provides life changing care in the Downtown East Side
- Dr. Herbert Fitterman: an eye on the future
- PHC researchers funded in Health Professional-Investigator competition
- Enter the #GetLoud contest - support the conversation about mental health
- The Foundry shares real stories from young adults about mental health
- How communicatively accessible are your health care services?
- Sign up today for the commuter challenge!
- Don't forget to register for Research Day
- Apply for the Enhanced Patient Care Grant before May 31
- Care Connection for May is now online
- Mother's Day is this Sunday, May 13
- SPH Cafeteria Menu May 14 - 20