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Natural Awakenings Charlotte

Do Not Be a Wishful Recycler in Mecklenburg County

Living by the motto “When in doubt throw it out,” creates anxiety for the eco-conscious but wishful recycling produces tremendous challenges and is very costly. It is much better to reduce or change consumption habits to decrease household waste.

Unacceptable items damage machines, injure workers and start fires. Mecklenburg County spends over $1.6 million per year to sort out and haul away non-recyclables that residents place in curbside recycling carts. Remember to drop off plastic bags at retail collection locations for proper recycling and never bag your recyclables. Recycling carts should only contain clean, empty and loose accepted items.

Please trash, compost or repurpose these items (Don’t try to recycle them):


  • Yogurt cups and dairy tubs
  • Clamshells: lettuce, berries etc.
  • Aluminum foil, pans and tins
  • Paper towels, tissue, napkins
  • Plastic zip pouches
  • Furnace filters
  • Anything made of these materials:

Foam, rubber, vinyl, wood, ceramic, crystal, stone, rope, cloth

For local information on waste disposal options, visit To attend Recycle Right and Waste Reduction presentations, email [email protected].

Recycle Right Meck County - start Oct 17 2020 1100AM

Recycle Right Meck County - start: Oct 17, 2020 11:00AM

An interactive presentation and dialogue with Mecklenburg County residents on how to Recycle Right. The program is about 40 minutes, but typically requires an extra 15 minutes for questio... Read More » 


Beyond Recycling Basics 7 Rs of Waste Reduction - start Nov 19 2020 1200PM

Beyond Recycling Basics: 7 R's of Waste Reduction - start: Nov 19, 2020 12:00PM

Mecklenburg County Solid Waste is offering a waste reduction webinar.Many in the community have already attended a Recycle Right presentation and wanted an opportunity to discuss waste re... Read More » 


Robust Recycling How Mecklenburg Supports by Educating Residents

Robust Recycling: How Mecklenburg Supports by Educating Residents

Jeff Smithberger is the Director of Solid Waste Management for Mecklenburg County. He and his team are responsible for the guidance and management of the County’s solid waste programs and... Read More » 


Guest Blog Jeff Smithberger with Solid Waste FAQs

Guest Blog: Jeff Smithberger with Solid Waste FAQs

Jeff Smithberger, Director Mecklenburg Solid Waste, has answers to the County's 7 most frequently asked solid waste questions Read More » 


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