For Allegheny County residents, recycling just became easier.
The online Recycling Drop-Off Finder, which was launched on Tuesday, Sept. 12, hosts a database and interactive map of all recycling drop-off locations within Allegheny County, along with the types of recyclables that are accepted.
A PDF of drop-off locations was previously available on the Allegheny County Health Department’s website. Health Department Deputy Director of Sustainability Brittany Prischak says that a summer intern was able to adapt the PDF to create a more accessible, interactive format.
“The biggest benefit here is to the residents,” Prischak says. “We want to try and reduce as much material being sent to landfills as possible. By providing resources like this of places that’ll either reuse materials or properly recycle them, we’re able to make that waste diversion percentage increase.”
Allegheny County expects that providing up-to-date information will increase recycling participation, especially for the 14 municipalities that do not have curbside recycling programs.
Prischak says a crucial part of what the online tool delivers is information on where to dispose of hazardous materials and other items that are not accepted by curbside programs.
Some types of batteries, electronic devices, paint, chemicals and tires can be harmful to the environment if disposed of incorrectly, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
Prischak asks that residents reach out through the online contact form linked on the drop-off finder webpage if they run into issues and inaccuracies, or if they know of other locations accepting recyclables.
“We figure the longer it’s out there and residents have a chance to take a look at it and businesses on the list have a chance to take a look at it, we might receive emails that will say, ‘Hey, this place stopped taking this item,’ or, ‘Hey, we found this place and they take these materials.’ Our hope is to continue maintaining it so that it’s accurate,” Prischak says.
Curious about what happens after your recyclables are collected? Catch up with Yinzer Backstage Pass as Boaz Frankel tours Pittsburgh’s recycling processing facility.