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Keyword: bureau of solid waste management

Marra Tripodi, Intern
 Bureau of Solid Waste Management

When it comes to recycling, many people head straight for the kitchen, but there is another important area of the home filled with recyclable items – the bathroom. According to a recent study commissioned by the Johnson and Johnson Family of Consumer Companies, only one in five Americans consistently recycles in the bathroom. However, many personal care products we use on a daily basis are recyclable. Below is a list of bathroom products accepted in Baltimore County’s single stream recycling program:

  • Plastic bottles (body wash, shampoo and conditioner, mouthwash, liquid hand soap, lotion, contact lens solution); plastic pumps in bottles are not recyclable and should be discarded as trash
  • Paperboard items (toilet paper tubes, tissue boxes, toothpaste boxes, soap cartons)
  • Empty aerosol cans (air freshener, deodorant, hairspray, sunscreen)

Shampoo bottles recycle too!

To start recycling in the bathroom, familiarize yourself with which bathroom products are accepted for recycling. Placing a small recycling container in the bathroom serves as a reminder to keep recyclable bathroom products out of the trash. Most items can be placed directly into the recycling container; however, plastic bottles should be emptied, lightly rinsed, and then recycled with the cap on.

So, next time you squeeze out the last drop of body wash or open a new box of toothpaste, give it a new life by recycling.

Celebrate Earth Day Every Day!

Baltimore County will host a joint compost bin and rain barrel sale on Saturday, April 23, from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The sale will be held at the Maryland State Fairgrounds, located at 2200 York Road in Timonium (enter near the main gate). These products enable residents to celebrate Earth Day (April 22) through the sustainable practices of home composting and rainwater reuse.

Compost bins, valued at $100, will be available for sale at $35 each. Rain barrels, valued at $120, will be available for sale at $50 each. Both prices include tax. These are the lowest prices you will find in Maryland for these items this year. Cash, checks, and credit cards (Visa and MasterCard) will be accepted. The sale will occur rain or shine, and all items will be available on a first-come, first-served basis (while supplies last). This sale is not limited to residents of Baltimore County.

Compost bins are shipped in two pieces and rain barrels are shipped in one piece; either product will fit in any car.

 Benefits of Composting

Through decomposition, composting converts yard materials (grass, leaves, and small brush) into a rich soil-enhancing material called humus. When this material is mixed with the soil in your gardens or on your lawn, it returns nutrients such as phosphorus, potassium, nitrogen, and many trace minerals that are beneficial for plant health and growth. Using compost also helps increase water retention in sandy soils and aids drainage in heavy and clay soils. Please note that to prevent problems with rodents and other animals, the Baltimore County Code prohibits placing any type of food material in compost piles or bins.

Rain Barrels Help Your Garden and the Environment

Collecting and reusing rainwater is a great way to help the environment and your garden because rainwater is free from chlorine and other water treatment chemicals. Using a rain barrel reduces water pollution that can, at times, be caused by stormwater runoff.

This sale will be a joint effort hosted by Baltimore County’s Department of Public Works, Bureau of Solid Waste Management, and the Department of Environmental Protection and Sustainability.

For more information about this event, residents may visit the solid waste management web site or call 410-887-2000.

Collections Occur from April 1 through December 14

Beginning Friday, April 1, yard materials will be collected separately for recycling (not with trash) from Baltimore County residents with “Y” days on their schedule.  These separate yard material collections will occur from April through as late as December 14. 

For example, if a resident’s first “Y” day is April 11, yard materials set out at the curb or alley from April 1–10 will not be collected with trash, but will be picked up separately on April 11.  If a resident’s schedule has no “Y” days, their yard materials will continue to be collected with trash year-round.

While residents may set out an unlimited number of bags of yard materials, the collector might not collect all of the bags on the same day.  Collectors must make trash collection their first priority, and must take into account all of the residents on their route.  Residents are asked to leave their yard materials out until collection occurs.

Yard materials acceptable for recycling collection include grass, leaves, vines, twigs, shrubbery trimmings, and branches and limbs.  Residents are reminded to use paper (preferred) or plastic lawn and leaf bags to set out their yard materials, not trash cans.  Bags of yard materials set out for collection must not exceed 30 pounds.  Also, branches and limbs will be collected only if they are no larger than 3 inches in diameter, no longer than 3 feet, and tied in bundles not exceeding 30 pounds. 

The yard materials collected on “Y” days will be composted into an earthy organic material, to be used by Baltimore County agencies and residents.

For more information about the County’s trash and recycling collection program, residents should visit the solid waste management web site or call 410-887-2000.


Revised September 26, 2016