Recycling center closing in Spartanburg due to contaminants

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SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – Many Spartanburg residents are starting off the decade striving to create a cleaner earth through recycling.

The county is fully prepared for those who want to start in their own household.

There are 17 fully staffed recycling facilities in the Spartanburg area where people can come by to drop off any unwanted solid waste.

Some of these locations are single stream recycling facilities, which means people can stop by and unload their smaller, single items into the bins without any staff nearby to help with sorting.

The dual stream facilities have at least one attendant available to help out with trash drop-off, which could limit the amount of non-recyclable items that are dumped into the bins.

But on Feb. 1 the only self-serve drop off location at Alba Court in downtown Spartanburg will be closing.

Officials say this is due to the massive amounts of non-recyclable items being dumped into the bins, with no staff present to help separate it all.

In Spartanburg County alone, recycling generates around $300,000 per year in revenue, but Jes Swanson says it’s more than just about money- it’s about helping the community and preventing staff members from touching hazardous materials.

“They open it up, they see it’s full of contaminates and you don’t see good, clean recyclable materials. There’s not a person on site. It’s an non-staffed drop off center, so there’s not somebody here to say ‘hey we can’t accept that,” Swanson said.

You could do more harm than good if you recycle the wrong items. Materials such as garden hoses, hangers, TVs, even Styrofoam should not be dumped into the recycling bins

“The entire load will be contaminated and those who have gone through the effort to do the right thing is for nothing because the entire load is contaminated by somebody who did the wrong thing,” Swanson said.

At the staffed locations, attendants are standing by to help residents with sorting out their items, which prevents people from dumping the wrong items into the bins.

The facilities even accept large items like tires, household appliances, mattresses and furniture.

For more information on all 17 staffed locations visit the Spartanburg County recycling web page or contact coordinator Jes Swanson via phone or email with any questions.

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