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Environmental Services

Posted on: September 23, 2020

You're Not Wish-Cycling, Are You?


We know the guilty feeling of throwing away something that might be recyclable. You want so badly to recycle something because maybe it just might have a slight chance at being recycled. Instead of throwing it away you make a wish and put it in the recycling cart. In doing so, you could actually be cause more harm than good when you put questionable items in your cart.

A term known throughout the recycling community for putting non-recyclable items in your cart is called "wish-cycling": the practice of tossing questionable items in the recycling cart, hoping they can somehow be recycled.

If you're unsure if an item is recyclable, use the city's Can I Recycle It online search tool. This search tool will tell you if you should recycle or trash an item, or whether you can bring it to the Environmental Collection Center during monthly Household Hazardous Waste collection events.

Read more about the negative effects of wish-cycling and what you can do to become a responsible recycler in this article from

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