The advantages of recycling cannot be overstated. It is a great way to help the environment and make sure that your household is clean and there is room for you to fill up with new things. But if you are not aware of the local recycling guidelines, it can be hard to figure out what goes into the blue recycling bin. You might know how to separate glass from plastic, but what do you do with electronic or other metal waste?
I’m here to break it down for you. I’ll cover the basic recyclables which can be put into the blue bin as well as other items that cannot be recycled at the curb. For other items, such as batteries, aerosol cans, bottle caps, and chemical or oil waste, Cobb County has other resources that can help you recycle them.
The Blue Recycling Bin
Cobb County offers a 65 gallon blue recycling rolling cart to anyone who subscribes to their monthly curbside recycling program, which only costs $10 a month. Recycling is picked up on your trash day, however, a different truck will be allotted for that.
Do not put compost, yard waste, or glass into this bin, as it is difficult to separate them from other items and can damage Westrock’s separation equipment. There are other resources in your city that can help you recycle these items.
The County recommends that you recycle only when your blue bin is ¾ full. This helps reduce the carbon footprint of the recycling trucks. The items eligible for curbside pickup are paper (including newspapers, magazines, and junk mail), plastics #1 and #2, drink and food cans, beverage cartons, and cardboard.
You want to ensure that any cardboard boxes are collapsed and stacked on top of each other so the crew can manage them easily.
Do not put recyclables in an open container if you do not have a “Tippable” can, as they can create quite a mess on windy and rainy days. Even though some items are marked “Recycle”, such as air filters, aerosol cans, boxes with plastic, egg cartons, or styrofoam, they must be recycled separately at WestRock Self Drop Off Recycling Center.
WestRock Self Drop Off Recycling Center
Most items that are not eligible for curbside pickup can be recycled at WestRock’s Self Drop Off recycling facility. This includes glass, plastics 1-7, scrap metal, and certain electronics.
You can also take common recyclables, such as paper, aluminum cans, and plastic food containers to the facility for recycling if you haven’t signed up for the curbside recycling program.
Do not crush or take the labels off on your aluminum cans. They must directly go into the bins provided at the facility. You can store them in bags/containers to carry them to the facility. Note that Cobb County does not pay for aluminum cans.
Clean glass containers, such as wine bottles, or food jars can be recycled at the facility for free. As a rule of thumb, you can recycle any container with a cap. Do not take items like table tops, light bulbs, drinking glasses, etc. as they contain additives which can make glass unsuitable for recycling.
Instead, take them to Advanced Disposal Transfer Station in Marietta who have suitable equipment for recycling those items.
Paper products including newspapers, books, magazines, and thin cardboard can be dropped off for free. Corrugated cardboard (shipping boxes) have been allotted separate bins so they should not be mixed with other paper products.
Plastics 1-7(i.e.water bottles, detergent bottles, and milk jugs) can be dropped off at the facility for free. Food containers must be rinsed out before you recycle them. The County recommends that you do not flatten or take the labels off plastic.
Other plastic items, such as bubble wrap, styrofoam, laundry baskets, trash cans, or plastic toys, should not be included with recyclable plastics. The Advanced Disposal Transfer Station in Marietta can take care of these items for you.
Steel, Metal and Tin
Clean (rinsed out with no food rescue left) steel, tin, and metal items can be recycled at no extra charge. However, you want to ensure that you do not remove the paper labels off the items.
Food And Beverage Cartons
Empty and clean cartons can be dropped off at the facility for recycling at no extra charge. Take your plastic or paper bags that you may have stored them in and drop them into the designated bin at the facility.
Most electronics items, such as computer monitors, cameras, portable radios, modems, printers, or alarm clocks can be recycled at the facility. Here is a complete list of items that can be recycled at the WestRock Drop Off Recycling center.
Inform the staff that you are bringing electronics to recycle so they can direct you towards the designated area where you may drop off the electronics.
Televisions are not recycled at the facility and will be charged regular floor tipping fees.
Currently curbside collection does not accept motor oil or any other hazardous waste. You can take these to the Cobb County Transfer station located at 1897 County Services Parkway, Marietta.
The facility charges you $7 for the first 400 pounds of hazardous waste and anything over that will be subjected to an additional rate of $0.03 per lb.
You can download the Waste Wizard app on your Android or IOS devices to access the collection calendar and also check out any related fees for recycling.
You will likely have a bunch of other items for recycling that the City cannot take care of for you. If that’s true, you’re in luck. Cobb County offers many resources to recycle these items.
Backyard debris, such as grass, branches, limbs, or leaves can be recycled at the Cobb County Vegetative Waste Recovery facility at 2150 County Services Pkwy. You will not be charged any fee for recycling these items. For more information on compost recycling, you can refer to their guidelines here.
Did you get a new set of tires for your car and don’t know what to do with the old ones? The Cobb County Transfer Station accepts tires for recycling at $2 each upto 5 tires. If you are bringing in more than five tires, then you will be charged at $100 per ton. However, it’s important to note that they do not accept ties larger than 15” in diameter.
Craft and School Supplies
If you have craft or school supplies that your children have outgrown, you can donate them to charitable organizations taking care of underserved children. It Starts With Me 2 is one such initiative that helps underprivileged children
If you have other items for recycling but are struggling to find the right channels or facilities nearby, Cobb County has this great tool that lets you find other people who may be in need of those items. Cobb County Connection lets charitable organizations list their needs on the platform so locals can donate to them directly.
If you are into community driven programs, then you are in luck. Due to increasing public demand, Cobb County government has started the KCB Community Recycling Events. You can recycle anything from paper and hard plastics to medicines here at no extra charge here.
However, to keep this event free for all locals, the government has set up some guidelines that we must follow. You can access the entire list of guidelines here.
I hope this brings clarity to how recycling works in Cobb County so we can do a better job of keeping the environment healthy.