Recycling and Solid Waste


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IMPORTANT INFO REGARDING YOUR MIXED BULK AND GREEN ORGANICS COLLECTION: Residents should make two separate piles - one for mixed bulk trash and one for green organics. The material is collected by two separate trucks and pickup may occur on separate days.  

Tempe has enhanced its Bulk Trash and Green Organics program to provide a more environmentally-friendly service while also reducing costs. The 2015 schedule includes more frequent pickups for mixed bulk trash and an optional program to recycle and compost your green waste. Click here for more information on the program and follow the link below for your 2015 pickup schedule.  

2015 Bulk Trash and Green Organics Area Schedule


Manitasw1Tempe students stepped up this year to show their commitment to the environment with the 2015 Bench the Bag contest! In all, the ten competing schools recycled more than 3,108 pounds of plastic and keeping that material out of the landfill. Congratulations to Arredondo Elementary School for collecting the most bags per student and winning this year's contest! The school collected nearly 80 bags per student, recycling 280 pounds of soft plastic. Arrendondo will receive a new bench made of recycled materials, courtesy of Trex, and an assembly during Earth Month this April.

Several Tempe schools competed to be crowned this year's Bench the Bag recycling champion. The schools collected plastic grocery bags between Feb. 17 and March 6. This year's participating schools were: Fuller, Arredondo, Broadmor, Carminati, Gililland, Connolly, Kyrene de los Ninos, C.I. Wagonner, Mariposa and Manitas.

Final results: 3,108 pounds collected and 233,118 plastic bags diverted from the landfill. Click here for results for each school. 

Plastic bag recycling facts  

  • Plastic bags take a long time to biodegrade and can harm the environment if improperly disposed.
  • They can’t go in your blue bin because they can get caught in the sorting equipment at the recycling facility. That’s why it’s important to recycle them separately with programs like Bench the Bag or at grocery store collection centers.  
  • Dirty plastic bags can interfere with the recycling process and will likely end up as trash. Always empty your bags of receipts and litter before recycling them.
  • Plastic bags are very light, which means large quantities are needed to be marketable for recyclers. This is another reason they should be collected separately.
  • Recycled plastic bags are commonly used to make lumber and new bags.
  • It takes approximately 2,000 plastic bags to equal 30 pounds of plastic.