Recycling Challenge: All the Stuff You Never Knew Could Go in the Blue Bin

story by Samantha WittchenFact: Aluminum foil and bottle caps are recyclable curbside in Philly.

Problem: You’ve just hosted a rockin’ holiday party, complete with the best local, seasonal brews, as well as several platters of Grandma’s famous holiday cookies. As you survey the party wreckage, you notice there’s a bunch of stray bottle caps littering your house, and the aluminum foil from Grandma’s cookies is now strewn across the dining room table. You’re not sure what to do with this stuff, but more importantly, why is your dog wearing a lampshade?

Solution: Lucky for you, much of that waste is recyclable curbside. Bottle caps (both metal and plastic) and aluminum foil are okay, as are things like aerosol cans, phone books, cartons (milk, orange juice, ice cream and soup), and those cardboard and metal coffee cans. However, the plastic bags your friends carried all that tasty beer in are still not recyclable curbside, so please don’t wrap your recyclables in them. (Most local grocery stores have recycle bins specifically for them.) For a full list of what’s recyclable and what’s not, as well as a handy print-out for your fridge, visit the RecycleNOW website (recyclenowphila.org/whattorecycle.html). In the meantime, go get that blue bin and start cleaning up. As for the dog, you’re on your own with that.