Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Recycling in PTown is Easier Than Ever

The attendant at  Provincetown's recycling center will tell you what to do.

Although I religiously recycle corrugated cardboard and paper, as well as that big blue bin full of plastic bottles and jugs, tin cans, glass and other items marked with the “recycle” symbol, I ended up with a stockpile of plastic jugs and mixed paper slowly building up. Some weeks there’s just too much to fit into that blue bin that I set out with my trash every week. When a friend lent me a car for a few days to do a number of errands, I made a trip out to the recycling center on Race Point Road to properly rid myself of this overflow. 
I hadn't been out to the transfer station/recycling center for quite a while, although I was a frequent user before the town improved its curbside recycling program and it became easy to just put all my recyclables out with the trash every week. Things have changed a bit, and it's now even easier to recycle. I was able to toss my mountain of plastic jugs and my big bundle of mixed paper all into one compactor.
While I was there other folks were bringing in cardboard, scrap wood, yard waste like leaves, grass and small branches, and various other recyclables. There's a shed where you can drop off Styrofoam packing peanuts, or pick some up if you need them. There's also free compost available to nourish your garden, made from the yard waste that's brought in by the public.
Books, toys and household goods can be dropped off at the swap shop, open 8 AM till noon, closed Sunday and Monday. It works kind of like a thrift store, but there's no charge for items you want to take home. No clothing or furniture, please, but you can take both to the United Methodist Church at 20 Shankpainter Road, and clothing can also be taken to Ruthie's Boutique. Technically, Ruthie's address is 14 Center Street, but you'll find it on Bradford between Standish and Center. Look for a lower level entrance next to a sort of roll-up garage door. Both of these thrift shops benefit local non-profits, and both accept household goods as well. Click on their links above to learn more about them.
Find out more about recycling in Provincetown by visiting the Recycling page of the town's website. Click on this link to the Household Hazardous Products page to find out how and where to safely dispose of everything from old medications (never flush them down the toilet) to toxic paints or garden chemicals and more of those tricky items you don't quite know how to handle safely.
We live in such a beautiful place here in Provincetown, and our environment is so fragile at the tip of Cape Cod. Our water supply, fishing stocks, walking trails, wildlife and many other reasons why we live and visit here can so easily be devastated by things we might carelessly cast off, so it's up to each of us to find out how to properly dispose of things we no longer want or need. And it's actually now easier than ever to do. You can call Provincetown's Department of Public Works at 508 487-7060 to answer any questions you might have. See you at the swap shop.

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