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How does recycling work?

I'm asking Anonymously because I know it sounds like a dumb question. In my city, we put all of our recyclables in a large bin. The other day, I noticed that the recycle truck compressed all of it's contents, just like a regular trash truck does. It just made me wonder how they sort the stuff out, compressed, when they get it to the plant? It almost made me think it was a scam.  If anyone has any knowledge on the subject, I'd appreciate the feedback.  Thanks!


Asked by Anonymous at 8:03 PM on Mar. 22, 2011 in Home & Garden

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Answers (4)
  • Oh it's super interesting. I live in an area that is large on recycling and have a plant very near my house. They take it to a large facility and all the recyclables are sorted out by type - some of it is manual - there are people who stand and watch the lines to make sure appropriate materials goes in right chute. In my area we actually get some of our power from it. They turn it into the most amazing things, building materials etc. Google "Waste Managment - Deerfield Beach, Florida" and I bet they have some promo video on it. We were just discussing the other night how fascinating it is.

    Answer by 8Tinkerboo8 at 8:05 PM on Mar. 22, 2011

  • Here is a good website:

    Answer by 8Tinkerboo8 at 8:07 PM on Mar. 22, 2011

  • Thanks for the question! I have often wondered exactly what happens to it all and how it is sorted.

    Answer by elizabr at 8:16 PM on Mar. 22, 2011

  • It actually is sorted out. We have a local sorting facility somewhere near where we live.

    Answer by twinsplus2more at 8:32 PM on Mar. 22, 2011