Knoxville will no longer accept glass in curbside recycling; seeks input on drop-off centers

KNOXVILLE (WATE) – The City of Knoxville will no longer accept glass as part of its curbside recycling program, but will continue to accept it, separated by color, at its five drop-off recycling centers.

The change starts on January 1. Officials say because the recyclables are unloaded into a large compacting truck, dumped onto a concrete floor and sorted on a conveyor belt, the glass breaks into small pieces. This causes two problems. First, the intermingled mix of many types of glass produces a very low quality glass commodity which is difficult to sell. Second, small pieces of broken glass contaminate other types of recyclables.

Because of this, much of the glass that’s intended for recycling ends up going to the landfill anyway.

The change also affects any single-stream receptacle serviced by the city, like those in public parks, downtown and other public spaces. However, glass can still be recycled, as long as it is separated by color, at any of the city’s five recycling drop off centers.

More online: Find a recycling center

The city of Knoxville is also seeking residents’ input on its recycling drop-off centers, including adding new locations to make it easier for people to recycle glass.

More: Take part in the survey

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