Paper, cardboard, and aluminum are the most valuable recyclable materials. While the cost of hauling and recycling other materials is sharply rising, Swarthmore gets a return on paper, cardboard, and aluminum, but only when separated and brought to the Recycling Center. Bringing your paper, cardboard, and aluminum to Swarthmore’s Recycling Center assures that your recyclables will be successfully recycled and reduces the overall cost to the Borough.
From Swarthmore Borough Facebook:
Swarthmore residents should be justifiably proud of the rate at which they recycle, with more than 35% of the Borough’s solid waste diverted from the trash stream. However, recent changes in the worldwide recycling market have made those overflowing blue bins of mixed recycling materials of limited value. In fact, they are costing the Borough and its contracted recycling team thousands of dollars annually and may be ending up in the trash instead of being recycled at all.
Is there anything I can do?
Recycled material is most valuable when it is separated before being recycled. It is likely that the Borough will change its curbside program in the near future to separate materials to the greatest extent feasible. However, in the meantime, we are encouraging residents to utilize the Borough’s Recycling Center, which is already set up for source separated material.
The Recycling Center is located at 121 Dartmouth Avenue and is open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on weekends. The Recycling Center is located in a residential neighborhood. Please be courteous and adhere to the posted hours!
What specifically should I be taking to the Recycling Center?
Any item that goes in your curbside bin can be taken to the Recycling Center. However, the following are the most valuable source-separated materials:
Paper and Cardboard
If it tears, bring it to the dumpster at the Recycling Center! A complete list of acceptable materials can be found on the stairs leading up to the dumpster. These include office paper, newspaper, window envelopes, books, magazines, pizza boxes (remove any leftover pizza and/or wax paper) and shredded paper (please put in a paper bag to keep it from blowing around). Cardboard should be flattened and any plastic or Styrofoam packing material should be removed. This material is sold to Newman Paper Company in Philadelphia and used to make a variety of paperboard products.
The green trailer at the Recycling Center is for aluminum only, which continues to be a valuable commodity for recycling. The Borough Public Works Department keeps track of the local market for aluminum and takes the collected material to whichever marketer is paying the highest price.
I can’t make it to the Recycling Center. Will you still take paper
and aluminum with my other recyclables?
Yes, all commingled material will still be collected every week curbside until further notice.