The Housatonic Resources Recovery Authority is implementing a new recycling program for glass approved by CT DEEP. Some local municipal recycling centers will begin to collect glass separate from the mixed recycling stream beginning in August 2020. Please take the time to read below why we are implementing this program and how to properly prepare and recycle your glass beverage and food containers. For information specific to your town, select from the tabs below.
The current plan for the separated glass is to send it to Urban Mining a new recycling company here in Connecticut. They make Pozzotive® a high performance postconsumer pozzolan and functional industrial filler, which is made from 100% recycled postconsumer glass. Learn more about Urban Mining here.
It is important that you follow the instructions. If you contaminate the glass container at your local drop-off with unacceptable items, it may cost your town contamination fees. In order to recycle the glass at its highest value, you must recycle only the acceptable items listed below.
IMPORTANT to note: Glass is a designated recyclable by state law. Glass should not be disposed of in the trash. Learn more about the State of Connecticut’s recycling laws by clicking here.
After your recyclables are picked up at the curb, waste haulers bring the materials to a transfer station. It is then taken to a Material Recovery Facility (MRF). The facility’s machines and employees sort the materials using conveyor belts, screens, optical scanners, forced air, and magnets to identify and group materials together. The sorted materials are then bailed and sold to market to be made into new products.
While it’s convenient for residents to mix recyclables in the same bin, the sorting process for mixed recycling isn’t perfect. Machines and employees at the MRF cannot remove all the contamination. One of the biggest contaminates is broken glass particles. The pieces of glass attach themselves to paper, cardboard, and other recyclables contaminating the bails and reducing their market value. The glass itself that is sorted is contaminated with bits and pieces of other items such as small pieces of paper, bottle caps, metal, and straws. There is a cost to clean the glass in order for it to be recycled. Most MRF glass is sent to landfills as Alternate Daily Cover (ADC) and is never recycled into a new bottle or jar.
In addition, the glass is hard on equipment, accelerating the wear and tear on conveyor belts, screens and other moving parts.
Due to current recycling markets, the cost to accept and process recyclables has increased significantly. In addition, contamination has also increased and has reduced the value of the commodities. In order to address the quality of the recyclables and to manage the increased cost, the Housatonic Resources Recovery Authority is implementing a program to recycle glass separate from the mixed recycling stream. This will increase the value of the overall mixed recycling stream and make the separated glass more marketable to be sold and recycled into new bottles and jars.
Glass is a Connecticut state mandated recyclable. All residents, businesses, schools and municipalities must recycle glass.
You may bring your glass to your local participating transfer station or contact a local hauler who provides the service at the curb.
It is essential that you recycle ONLY acceptable glass. If you add any unacceptable items you contaminate the entire load and it will be either rejected or cost your town contamination fees.
1.) Rinse your glass containers, remove lids or caps.
2.) Place in a box or bag separate from your mixed recycling bin.
3.) Drop-off at your local participating recycling center during operating hours.
Residents are encouraged (not required) to separate glass from their mixed recycling bin.
We understand going to the transfer station may not be ideal. Ideas are currently under consideration on how to separate glass curbside.
In the meantime, for those who are able to take it to the transfer station, there will be a container for “glass only”. The station is open from 7:00 a.m to 3:00 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.
A permit is NOT required to access the transfer station to recycle glass.
The Town of Newtown is the only town in the HRRA Region that has municipal collection of recycling. This means the cost of collection is in your tax dollars. Due to market conditions, the rate of recycling has increased from $10 a ton to now $94 ton. Glass is the heaviest material in the mixed recycling stream. When glass is removed from the mixed stream we can reduce the cost by $10-$15 per ton.
Glass in the Mixed Stream vs Collecting it Separately:
Currently, glass that is mixed in the stream is not being used for new glass products. It is turned into a beneficial material for landfill cover replacing the use of earthen products, which isn’t the highest & best use. However, when we collect glass separately, it becomes a quality material for recycling into bottles, composite industrial fillers for cement blocks, fiber glass products and many other recycled products.
Weston is not offering a container at this time to recycle glass separate. Please contact your hauler to inquire if they offer a separate collection of glass. View the list of registered haulers in your town that collect glass separate.
The glass program accepts all colors of food and beverage glass. Labels can stay on.
If you can see through it, we can likely recycle it!
For a complete list of glass items that can and can’t be recycled, please click here.
The short answer—glass breaks.
When glass is mixed with other recyclables, broken glass degrades and contaminates those other materials, reducing their value and sometimes their ability to be sold to market. In addition, the glass that is collected along with other recyclables is often sent to landfills as an Alternate Daily Cover and never recycled into a new product.
The short answer is – No
The HRRA and participating municipalities are not providing small carry containers to collect glass. We encourage you to reuse a box or a bag to collect your glass bottles and jars to transport them to your local recycling center.
Glass cullet is glass that is cleaned, crushed and ready to be processed into new products including glass containers, fiberglass, reflective paints, abrasives, aggregates, and more.
Yes. The HRRA through the support of CT DEEP offers special event recycling containers called Clear Stream Bins. We provide the bins and the clear bag inserts. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
The short answer is no.
You should redeem your bottle deposit at a local redemption center or return to a grocery store. If you can not get to redemption center or grocery store to return your bottles for redemption, they are acceptable for recycling in the glass collection program.
Glass is 100% recyclable and can be recycled endlessly without loss in quality or purity.
Glass is made from readily-available domestic materials, such as sand, soda ash, limestone and “cullet,” the industry term for furnace-ready recycled glass.
Recycled glass can be substituted for up to 95% of raw materials.
Manufacturers benefit from recycling in several ways: Recycled glass reduces emissions and consumption of raw materials, extends the life of plant equipment, such as furnaces, and saves energy.
Recycled glass containers are always needed because glass manufacturers require high-quality recycled container glass to meet market demands for new glass containers.
Recycled glass is always part of the recipe for glass, and the more that is used, the greater the decrease in energy used in the furnace. This makes using recycled glass profitable in the long run, lowering costs for glass container manufacturers—and benefiting the environment.
For more facts on glass recycling visit www.gpi.org
Much of the information provided on this page came from Ripple Glass. A successful glass recycling company. You can visit their site at https://www.rippleglass.com/