Here are all the tools you need to properly recycle waste in Eagle County |

Here are all the tools you need to properly recycle waste in Eagle County

Kim Schlaepfer
Walking Mountains Science Center

Recycling is hard, let’s face it. We try to take care of our environment and put our trash in the right bin, but a lot of times we are told, “that’s wrong!” or, “how in the world did you think that was going to be able to be recycled?” or just simply, “Seriously? You’re dumb.”

We’ve all been “recycle shamed” at one point in our lives, where we, with the best intentions in the world, were made out to be the environmental tyrant destroying the planet, simply because we tried to recycle the wrong thing.

So where do you find answers? Perhaps you are thinking of your most eco-minded friend, who usually can give you a “yes” or “no” in a heartbeat. Or maybe you are thinking back to the list you were handed from your recycling hauler that was way too long to actually read, and at this point, it’s totally lost. Or maybe, like most, you just say, “screw it, this looks like it should be recyclable,” and you throw it in your bin.

What’s the reason for all the constant confusion? There are different rules on recycling in this community, and everywhere, based on who picks up your recycling and where it goes. Blame capitalism or competition if you want to point a finger somewhere. It’s the world we’re stuck with for now so we may as well make the best of it.

Walking Mountains Science Center has some solutions to offer because that’s the only way we can #bebettertogether.

Eagle County Waste Wizard App

First things first, if you don’t have it, download the Eagle County Waste Wizard on your phone. Do it. Now.

Once you have this genius little bit of software installed, you will be able to look up every single thing that could ever be thrown out and know in an instant if it should go in your recycle bin or not. Sounds magical right? Well it is. Download it now and experience the magic for yourself.

Bi-Annual Recycling Education Blitz

But we didn’t just stop at an app. We thought to ourselves, why are people with the amazing gift of knowledge at their fingertips still putting plastic bags in the recycling bin? We think it’s because those of us in the world of recycling have not been constant, insistent and annoying enough in our recycling education that people forget, get lazy and stop thinking all together when it comes to recycling.

Walking Mountains is on a mission to change that, and so we are launching our first Bi-Annual Recycling Education Blitz for the Eagle County Community.

We are spelling out in perfect clarity (with pictures included) what can always go in your recycle bin and what can never go in your recycle bin. Walking Mountains is going to run this campaign every 6 months, so that you can never again have an excuse for not knowing the recycling rules of our community.

It will be there as a constant reminder of what should go in your bin, the low-down on what’s changed in the recycling industry in the last six months (supply and demand of recyclables; what’s hot and what’s not) and what will never change.

Kim Schlaepfer is the climate action collaborative project manager at Walking Mountains Science Center. Contact her at

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