Top Ten Things That Are Recycled and Shouldn’t Be

Recycling is a great way to reduce waste and protect the environment, but not everything can or should be recycled. In fact, some items that you might think are recyclable can actually contaminate or damage the recycling process, making it less efficient and more costly. In this blog post, we will look at the top ten things that are recycled and shouldn’t be, and what you can do instead to dispose of them properly.

1. Aerosol Cans

Aerosol cans can be recycled, but only if they are completely empty. Otherwise, they can pose a fire or explosion hazard at the recycling facility. If you have any leftover product in your aerosol cans, you should use it up or dispose of it as hazardous waste. You can also look for alternatives that don’t come in aerosol cans, such as pump sprays or solid products¹.

2. Batteries

Batteries shouldn’t go in with your conventional recycling. They contain toxic chemicals and metals that can leak and pollute the environment. They also require special handling and processing to recover the valuable materials inside. You should take your batteries to a designated collection point or a battery recycling program. You can also switch to rechargeable batteries or solar-powered devices to reduce your battery waste².

3. Pizza Boxes

Pizza boxes are made of cardboard, which is recyclable, but the problem is the grease that gets absorbed in them. Grease can interfere with the paper fibers and make them less suitable for recycling. It can also contaminate other recyclable materials and lower their quality. If your pizza box is clean and dry, you can recycle it. If it is greasy or has food residue, you should compost it or throw it in the trash³.

4. Bubble Wrap

Bubble wrap is a type of plastic film that is used to protect fragile items during shipping or storage. It is not recyclable in most curbside programs, as it can clog the sorting machines and cause problems. You should reuse your bubble wrap as much as possible, or donate it to a local business or organization that can use it. You can also look for eco-friendly alternatives, such as paper, cardboard, or biodegradable packing peanuts⁴.

5. Empty Deodorant Containers

Empty deodorant containers are tricky to recycle, as they are often made of a combination of plastic, metal, and cardboard. These materials need to be separated before they can be recycled, which is not easy to do. You should check with your local recycling program to see if they accept deodorant containers, and if not, you should throw them in the trash. You can also try making your own deodorant or buying deodorant that comes in recyclable or compostable packaging⁵.

6. Dental Floss and Containers

Dental floss is not recyclable, as it is too small and thin to be sorted and processed. It can also get tangled in the recycling machinery and cause damage. Dental floss containers are usually made of plastic, which can be recycled, but you need to remove the metal cutter and any leftover floss before you do so. You can also opt for dental floss that is made of natural materials, such as silk or bamboo, and comes in reusable or biodegradable containers.

7. Scrap Metal

Scrap metal, such as wire hangers, frying pans, or microwaves, should not go in your regular recycling bin. They can damage the recycling equipment and pose a safety risk for the workers. Scrap metal can be recycled, but it needs to be taken to a specialized facility or a scrap metal dealer. You can also donate or sell your scrap metal to someone who can use it or repair it.

8. Textiles

Textiles, such as clothes, towels, or curtains, are not accepted in most recycling programs, as they are made of different types of fibers that are hard to separate and recycle. They can also contaminate other recyclable materials and reduce their quality. You should donate or sell your textiles that are in good condition, or repurpose them into something else. You can also compost your textiles that are made of natural fibers, such as cotton or wool.

9. Ceramics

Ceramics, such as mugs, plates, or pots, are not recyclable, as they are made of clay and other materials that have a different melting point and composition than glass. They can also break and damage the recycling machinery and the glass products. You should reuse or repair your ceramics that are still functional, or donate or sell them to someone who can use them. You can also break your ceramics into small pieces and use them for crafts or gardening.

10. Styrofoam

Styrofoam, also known as polystyrene, is a type of plastic foam that is used for packaging, insulation, or food containers. It is not recyclable in most curbside programs, as it is bulky, lightweight, and difficult to process. It can also break into small pieces and pollute the environment and harm wildlife. You should avoid using Styrofoam as much as possible, or take it to a drop-off location or a mail-back program that accepts it. You can also look for alternatives that are made of paper, cardboard, or cornstarch.


Recycling is a good practice, but it is not always the best option. Some items that are recycled and shouldn’t be can cause more harm than good to the environment and the recycling system. You should always check the rules and guidelines of your local recycling program before you put something in the recycling bin. You should also try to reduce, reuse, and compost your waste as much as possible, and choose products that are eco-friendly and recyclable. By doing so, you can help make the world a cleaner and greener place. 🌎

¹: 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not — Family Handyman
²: 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not — Family Handyman
³: 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not — Family Handyman
⁴: 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not — Family Handyman
⁵: 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But Aren’t – Grove Collaborative
: 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But Aren’t – Grove Collaborative
: 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not — Family Handyman
: 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not — Family Handyman
: 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not — Family Handyman
: 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not — Family Handyman

Source: Conversation with Bing, 2/16/2024
(1) What can and can’t be recycled – BBC.
(2) 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not.
(3) 20 Items That Shouldn’t Actually go in Your Recycling.
(4) Recycling: what you can and can’t recycle and why it’s so confusing.
(5) 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But Aren’t – Grove Collaborative.
(6) 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not.
(7) 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not.
(8) 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not.
(9) 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not.
(10) 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But Aren’t – Grove Collaborative.
(11) 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But Aren’t – Grove Collaborative.
(12) 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not.
(13) 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not.
(14) 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not.
(15) 11 Things You Think Are Recyclable But They’re Not.

The Impact of Global Warming on Arctic Wildlife

The Arctic is one of the most vulnerable regions to climate change, warming at twice the rate of the rest of the world. This has profound consequences for the wildlife that lives there, as well as for the people who depend on them. In this blog post, we will explore some of the effects of global warming on Arctic wildlife and what can be done to protect them.

Sea ice loss

One of the most visible impacts of global warming on Arctic wildlife is the loss of sea ice, which is critical for many species such as polar bears, walruses, seals, and narwhals. Sea ice provides a platform for hunting, resting, breeding, and migrating. It also reflects sunlight and helps regulate the climate.

According to WWF Arctic1, sea ice is projected to nearly disappear in the summer within a generation. This means that ice-dependent species will face increasing challenges to survive and reproduce. For example, polar bears could face starvation and reproductive failure even in far northern Canada by 21001Walruses are forced to haul out on land in large numbers, where they are vulnerable to predators and stampedes1Narwhals may lose their unique feeding habitats and become more exposed to human activities1.

Vegetation change

Another impact of global warming on Arctic wildlife is the change in vegetation, which affects the food web and the habitat of many animals. As the Arctic becomes warmer and greener, shrubs are expanding and replacing mosses and lichens on the tundra1This may benefit some herbivores such as moose and snowshoe hares, but it may also reduce the quality and availability of food for others such as caribou and muskoxen1Warmer winter temperatures have also increased the layers of ice in snow, making it harder for these animals to dig up plants1.

Moreover, vegetation change may disrupt the timing and interactions between plants and pollinators, which are essential for plant reproduction and diversity. For instance, at Zackenberg research station in north-east Greenland, scientists found that important pollinating flies declined by 80% between 1996 and 20141, possibly due to a mismatch between plant flowering and pollinator flight activity.

Migration change

A third impact of global warming on Arctic wildlife is the change in migration patterns, which affects the distribution and abundance of many species. As the climate changes, some animals may shift their ranges northward or to higher altitudes to find suitable conditions. For example, fish stocks in the Barents Sea are moving north at up to 160 kilometers per decade as a result of climate change1. This may have implications for the predators that rely on them, such as seabirds and marine mammals.

Other animals may face difficulties in completing their long-distance migrations due to altered environmental cues, habitat loss, or human disturbance. For example, shorebirds or waders are among the most diverse and threatened groups of birds on the Arctic tundra2. They migrate thousands of kilometers between their breeding grounds in the high latitudes and their wintering grounds in warmer regions. However, more than half of all Arctic shorebird species are declining2, partly due to habitat degradation along their migratory routes.

What can we do?

The impacts of global warming on Arctic wildlife are diverse, unpredictable, and significant. They pose serious threats to the survival and well-being of these animals, as well as to the ecological balance and cultural values of the region. However, there are also opportunities for action and adaptation.

One of the most urgent actions is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions globally, which is the main driver of climate change. This requires international cooperation and commitment from governments, businesses, and individuals. By limiting global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, we can avoid some of the worst impacts on Arctic wildlife and ecosystems.

Another action is to conserve and restore habitats for Arctic wildlife, both on land and at sea. This includes protecting key areas from development, pollution, and overexploitation; restoring degraded habitats; and creating corridors and buffers for wildlife movement. This can help maintain biodiversity and ecosystem services, as well as support local livelihoods and cultures.

A third action is to monitor and research Arctic wildlife populations and trends, as well as their responses to climate change and other stressors. This can help improve our understanding and awareness of the challenges and opportunities facing these animals, and inform adaptive management and conservation strategies. This also requires collaboration and participation from scientists, governments, communities, and organizations.


Global warming is having a profound impact on Arctic wildlife, affecting their behavior, distribution, and survival. These impacts are not only detrimental to the animals themselves, but also to the people who depend on them and the planet as a whole. However, there is still hope and time to act. By reducing emissions, conserving habitats, and monitoring wildlife, we can help protect and preserve the Arctic and its wildlife for generations to come.

Wildlife Management in Urban Areas

Urban areas are often considered to be devoid of wildlife, but this is not true. Cities are home to a variety of plants and animals, some of which are native and some of which are introduced or invasive. Urban wildlife can provide many benefits to humans, such as pollination, pest control, recreation and education. However, urban wildlife can also pose many challenges, such as conflicts with human activities, health and safety risks, habitat loss and degradation, and biodiversity decline.

How to Manage Urban Wildlife

Managing urban wildlife is not an easy task. It requires a balance between conservation and control, as well as collaboration among various stakeholders, such as government agencies, non-governmental organizations, researchers, landowners and residents. Some of the techniques that have been used historically to restore and manage wildlife in urban areas include1:

  • Passage of laws and regulations to protect wildlife and their habitats
  • Establishment of refuges and corridors to provide safe havens for wildlife
  • Control of predators and invasive species to reduce competition and predation
  • Reintroduction of native species to restore ecological functions
  • Feeding and watering of wildlife to supplement their natural resources
  • Erection of nesting structures and artificial habitats to enhance breeding success
  • Habitat restoration and management to improve the quality and quantity of wildlife habitats

Examples of Urban Wildlife Management

Many cities around the world have implemented successful urban wildlife management programs that aim to conserve biodiversity and foster coexistence between humans and wildlife. Here are some examples234:

  • In New York City, the Urban Wildlife Conservation Program works with local communities to improve access to nature and green space, provide environmental education and outdoor recreation opportunities, and address social and environmental justice issues. The program also supports the management of more than 100 national wildlife refuges located within 25 miles of urban areas.
  • In Leipzig, Germany, peregrine falcons have been reintroduced to the city after being extirpated by pesticides in the 1960s. The falcons have adapted well to the urban environment, nesting on tall buildings and feeding on pigeons and other birds. The falcons survive and reproduce more easily in cities than in rural areas, due to the abundance of prey and the absence of natural predators.
  • In Singapore, one of the most densely populated cities in the world, wildlife management is integrated into urban planning and development. The city has created a network of parks, gardens, reservoirs and green corridors that connect natural habitats and support a rich diversity of wildlife. The city also employs various methods to mitigate human-wildlife conflicts, such as fencing, signage, education and enforcement.


Urban wildlife management is a complex and dynamic field that requires constant monitoring and adaptation. It is important to recognize that urban areas are not biological deserts, but rather potential havens for wildlife. By applying sound scientific principles and engaging with diverse stakeholders, we can create more livable cities for both humans and wildlife.

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