Frequently Asked Questions
1) What happens to my recyclable items?
- Aluminum - Aluminum is one of the most efficient materials to recycle and earns more revenue than most other materials so generates income that can offset the recycling of other materials. If you have a choice between aluminum cans or plastic bottles—choose cans! Aluminum and tin are sold to United Metals and remade into aluminum and tin. Learn more about United Metals Recycling here https://youtu.be/3SLwKAOoe4A
- Construction Waste - Approximately 6,000 tons of construction waste and debris goes into the landfill from Blaine County each year! The City of Hailey requires separate bins for cardboard and clean wood waste on site during construction, which will be verified by the program administrators during regularly scheduled inspections. The City of Ketchum requires separate recycling containers for cardboard, metal, plastic, and clean wood waste. The City of Bellevue recommends a construction waste management plan.
- Corrugated Cardboard - Cardboard is sold to paper mills in Oregon, Washington, and China. Carboard is efficient to recycle and earns revenue. Please make sure to flatten all of your cardboard before depositing it in the collection bin. All carboard must also be dry and free from contaminants or it won't be able to be recycled.
- Glass - Glass is crushed and used locally as cover for the construction and demolition pit at Ohio Gulch Transfer Station. Glass is a challenge to recycle because it is heavy, unsafe to transfer and has minimal end markets to purchase it. There is an ongoing effort to research alternatives that truly recycle or reuse glass so continuing to deposit glass in the community collection bins is a good practice to maintain in case a new end market is identified.
- Plastic - Plastics #1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 are accepted. (Note that caps need to be removed and black plastic cannot be recycled.) Plastic is transported to Utah to be recycled. Plastic is energy intensive to recycle so choosing other materials is better for the planet.
- Plastic Bags and Film - Plastic film (newspaper sleeves, bread bags, product wrap, cereal liners, food storage bags, ice bags, pellet bags, produce bags, dry cleaning bags, grocery bags, packaging air pillows, etc.) are light to transport and are sent to Nevada to be recycled into Trex Decking. To learn more about Trex Decking visit https://youtu.be/z0gBMWPlcIU
- Paper - Paper goes to Hamilton Manufacturing in Twin Falls, Idaho to be recycled into insulation and hydromulch. (P.S. staples are ok!) Magazines, cardstock, and any paper product other than office/copy paper and newspaper cannot be used, so these need to go in the trash. For example, cardstock (e.g. cereal boxes) are a short fiber that is at the end of its life, and is not worth recycling. Learn about Hamilton Manufacturing here https://youtu.be/jDtHMtkAlok
- Yard Waste - Yard waste is collected by the City of Hailey and the City of Ketchum at designated weekends and locations in the spring and fall. Yard waste can also be dropped off at Ohio Gulch Transfer station where it is composted on site due to the program’s regulatory requirements.
2) Where can I take other household items?
- Batteries - Can be dropped off at: The ERC in Ketchum, Blaine County Recycle Center (110 Ohio Gulch Road–Bldg 1), Carey Transfer Satiation (1675 South 1800 East, Carey)
- Egg Cartons - Egg cartons are not recyclable but can be taken to the local grocery stores, or dropped off at The Hunger Coalition to be reused, Mountain Humane also collects egg cartons for their small animals and cat enrichment.
- Ink and Toner Cartridges - Cartridges can be dropped off at Jane’s in Hailey (788-0848), Copy & Print in Hailey (788-4200), Business as Usual in Ketchum (726-3130), OfficeMax in Twin Falls or Boise.
- Clothing - Clothing can be dropped off at local thrift stores, or the ERC.
- Appliances - Working appliances in good condition are a great example of a reusable item. Large Items are accepted at The Building Material Thrift Store. Small Appliances can be donated to The Gold Mine, The Attic Thrift Store, or the Barkin’ Basement.
- Car Battery - A used battery that still has useful life may be reconditioned for resale. Worn-out batteries are routed to lead reclaiming plants where the lead is extracted and used in the manufacture of new batteries. The plastic and sulfuric acid can also be recycled. Recycling spent batteries protects our community and the environment and saves the energy and cost of raw materials. Car batteries can be dropped of at Ohio Gulch Transfer Station ( 110 Ohio Gulch Road ), Carey Transfer Satiation (1675 South 1800 East, Carey), O’Reilly’s Auto Parts (960 South 4th Ave, Hailey).
- Light Bulbs - Unbroken CFL Light Bulbs and Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs (no fluorescent tubes) can be recycled at both Home Depot or Lowe’s in Twin Falls. At this time, these products are not accepted at the Ohio Gulch Recycle Center.
- Paint - We accept both oil and latex paint at the Blaine County Recycle Center. This is limited to residential households and Conditionally Exempt Small Quantity Generators (CESOG). The limit for paint is 5 gallons per day and no more than 25 gallons per month. Additional latex paint cans may be dried out and taken to the Ohio Gulch Transfer Station.
- Wood Waste - Yard Waste including tree trunks, limbs, bark, bushes, shrubs and Christmas trees with NO lights, decorations, tinsel, stands (Clean trees). Untreated Wood Waste including untreated dimensional lumber, untreated wood fencing, untreated wood pallets, untreated wood poles. Wood waste can be dropped off at Blaine County Transfer Station (110 Ohio Gulch Road), Wynn's Compost (Ohio Gulch Road).
3) Do I need to have 3 official Recycles bins?
- No! You can sort in anything from cardboard boxes and wire baskets to buckets and totes as long as it’s sorted and easy for the driver to manage. Use your container or one of ours! NOTE: It’s best to use sorting containers that will not blow around and turn into litter.
4) Where can I get new bins?
- Use your container or one of ours! You can sort your curbside recycling in any type of container you’d like, but if you’d like to use a blue bin, contact Clear Creek Disposal • www.ccdisposal.com • (208) 726-9600
5) I separate my recyclables in plastic bags. Is that ok?
- No! Using plastic bags damages the machines at the recycling plant and can cause big fines for our county.
6) Do I put plastic bags in the bin with the plastics # 1-5?
- No! Plastic bags damage the machines at the Ohio Gulch Recovery Center. Please recycle plastic bags in the Hilex Poly bins located at Atkinsons in Ketchum, ERC, the Blaine County Annex building, or the Bellevue Country Store.
7) Does Blaine County recycle glass?
- Blaine County DOES divert glass! In October 2012 we stopped picking up glass at residential curbside due to contamination and risk of injury to our employees, however, glass is still accepted at different drop off locations around the County, and businesses have the option of having glass picked up at the business. To arrange for glass pick up at your business, please contact Clear Creek Disposal at (208) 726-9600. Glass is brought to Ohio Gulch, crushed, and placed in an inert pit and used as filler.
8) Do I have to separate newspapers from other types of paper?
- No! A newspaper can go in with your printer/copy paper.
9) I seem to be the only one on my street that recycles. How can I encourage my neighbors to recycle?
- We love this enthusiasm! We work hard to reach out to all Blaine County residents in a variety of ways, but sometimes having a casual conversation with your neighbors about the ease of the recycling process is a good place to start.
10) I live in an apartment building. How can I recycle?
- Many apartments and condo complexes offer to recycle, and we suggest you check with your property management company or HOA to ensure what is offered. If collection bins are not offered at your property, you can contact Clear Creek at (208) 726-9600 for individual curbside pick up, or take recyclable items to our seven different drop-off locations free of charge.