S2 Episode 4 – The Story on Recycling Paper

Apr 06 2020

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Join us for a countdown to Earth Day with season 2 of Earth Chats. We’re releasing an episode every weekday through April 22nd, the 50th anniversary of Earth Day.

In this episode: Heather’s thoughts about junk mail. Surprise! Paper cups and plates, napkins and paper towels are not recyclable. Don’t send Kay a singing birthday card. Grandma Gail bags, birthday boxes, and other alternatives to wrapping paper. Mouse enjoyment. Contaminants in paper recycling.

?A good rule of thumb: Flatten boxes before recycling. 

?Better rule of thumb: Reuse before recycling. 

If you can’t reuse some of these papers, here’s what you can and can’t recycle curbside:


  • Newspaper, comics, glossy paper (not photo paper)
  • Heavier quality paper
  • Cardstock 
  • Computer paper  
  • Stapled paper
  • TP cardboard rolls, paper towel rolls
  • Cereal boxes (not the plastic bags inside)
  • Clean parts of pizza boxes


  • Shredded paper
  • Paper Plates and Paper Cups
  • Paper fasteners like Binder clips and paper clips 
  • Wax paper (most types)
  • Wrapping paper 
  • Tissue paper for wrapping
  • Paper Napkins and Paper Towels
  • Photo Paper
  • Mailing labels, stickers
  • Books (paper is ok, binding is not)

Mentioned in this episode:

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Earth Chats podcast is a production of SCARCE Environmental Education.
Produced by Louise Kelly
Music by Louise Kelly
Sound production by Bella Rose

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