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Resident furious after terrible experience with negligent garbage collectors: 'Go to their local offices'

"Something is better than nothing."

"Something is better than nothing."

Photo Credit: Reddit

A homeowner in a new neighborhood illustrated the problem with recycling.

"I pay $28 a month, and this is the 8th week in a row that they've forgot to pick up my recycling," the Redditor said, posting in r/mildlyinfuriating.

There were mitigating circumstances — just two residents on the block, construction congestion, and a dirt turnaround at the end of the street — but these factors shouldn't have prevented pickup since garbage collection was going swimmingly.

The neglect of recyclables thoughtfully sorted from rubbish was no fluke. In the same subreddit, a different waste management company was documented tossing a Florida homeowner's recycling into a trash truck, and something similar happened to a whole building's worth of recycling in Chicago.

Most plastic is not recyclable, which contributes to the mere 5-6% recycling rate in the United States. But that doesn't mean recycling is a lost cause.

"I assume there's a different bin for recycling and regular garbage? Just start putting everything in the garbage," one commenter suggested. "The current way we recycle things isn't especially helpful, it's just a feel good thing."

They were met with resistance.

"I know the current state of recycling in this country is poor, but something is better than nothing," someone said.

Another user elaborated: "Recycling isn't just a feel good thing if you're putting out cardboard, paper and aluminum. Most of that does get sold by recyclers and actually recycled. Aluminum in particular reduces energy consumption by 95% when you recycle it versus making new material, and it's infinitely recyclable. It's the plastic that often ends up at a landfill anyway."

And when plastic doesn't become trash, it still produces air and water pollution by way of microplastics.

The short-term solution is to avoid buying products made with single-use plastics and turn to items such as reusable water bottles and those that employ plastic-free packaging.

In the long term, people have the power to push corporations toward accountability.

"Companies want to put recycling symbols on plastic so you don't feel bad about the incredible amount of garbage produced to temporarily hold things," the recycling proponent continued.

Someone else had a mischievous idea.

"Go to their local offices and throw your trash around," they said.

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