REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE
LOCAL RECYCLING INFORMATION: Check the links below for current recycling information in your county.
Orange County Chatham County Durham County
OTHER RECYCLING AND DONATING INFORMATION
- Eyeglasses: Prescription and nonprescription glasses, broken or not, including sunglasses, can be taken to eyecare services including Pearle Vision and Lens Crafters.
- Cell phones: Phones with or without chargers are accepted at Durham Crisis Response Center
- Children's books can be taken to Book Harvest.
- Batteries: All types of batteries can be taken to the Orange County Waste and Recycling Centers for recycling. Please see guidelines for different types of batteries.
- Textiles: All sorts of clean and dry textiles, including worn out clothes, shoes, bedding, belts and more can be dropped at Green Zone bins for recycling. Also, worn-out clothing or other textiles not suitable to go directly on the thrift store sales floor are sold by the pound by the PTA Thrift Store (Chatham County) and the newly named CommunityWorx Thrift Shop in Chapel Hill (next to Whole Foods). Bag separately, keep clean and dry, and mark as 'rags', then bring them to one of the donation points (Jones Ferry Rd. or Elliot Rd.). Textiles (separated and marked) can also be taken to the Eubanks Rd. Waste and Recycling Center in the clothing bin.
- Glass: Glass bottles and jars can be recycled with mixed "single-stream" recycling curbside, at apartment complexes, at 24 Hour Recycling Drop-off locations or Waste and Recycling Centers. If recycling at a Drop-off site or Waste and Recycling Center you are encouraged to separate glass in one of our Glass On The Side containers. Lids and caps can stay on. Labels can stay on.
- Aluminum foil and foil pans: recycle clean and crumpled aluminum foil and trays at the scrap metal bins at the Waste and Recycling Centers.
- Shredded paper can NO LONGER be recycled in Orange or Chatham County. However, free shredding services are offered year-round at the Shred Center. Shredded paper can also go in your compost.
- Plastics: As with many materials, recycling markets for plastics change. You may have heard that China won't take American plastics for recycling anymore, but here in the Southeast we still have recycling facilities that take plastic. Plastic bottles, jars, and tubs continue to be picked up curbside. Many plastic bags and wrappings, including dry cleaning bags, zip lock bags and toilet paper wrappings, can be recycled (if clean and dry) at local grocery stores. Find out more about recycling plastic bags and other plastic "film."
- Technology Recycling: Don’t let your old gadgets end up in the landfill, as they can harm the environment in multiple ways. There are many places that will take your old electronics for recycling, from computers and printers to tablets and portable music players, although some programs are suspended due to COVID-19. Orange County Waste and Recycling Centers are currently operating as normal and take electronics. Even better, use the old ones as long as possible and donate working items when you can. Kramden Institute in Durham refurbishes donated computers and many other electronics for students in need.
- Plastic plant pots and dirty compost bags can be returned for recycling and reuse at Lowe's Home Improvement Stores. They will take all plastic pots including the flimsy cell packs and plastic trays that contained multiple pots, as well as clean, empty plastic bags that contained compost or mulch.
- All types of cartons, such as those containing milk, soup, wine, juice, etc. can be recycled curbside along with bottles and cans. Leave plastic tops on, remove straws, flatten.
- Join groups to actively Reuse and Recycle resources, such as Recycles.org. C3HUU is a member; you can join as an individual, too. Our Recycles.org sponsor has more information.
- To find out more about recycling all sorts of items, visit Orange County's recycling page. Also try Freecycle to give away items you don't need or find items you do need.
To contact ECO with questions, get on our ECO email list, or explore joining our committee send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.