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Holiday recycling: What you need to know about plastic cups and dishware

Disposable plates, cups and silverware seem like a great idea because of the easy cleanup. But they automatically mean more waste in our landfills.

GARFIELD HEIGHTS, Ohio — The holidays are here, and pandemic or not, families always generate more trash this time of year.

3News talked to the experts at the Cuyahoga County Solid Waste District about some simple steps you can take to be a little "greener" around the holidays.

Many of us will be having special family meals at home -- even if it's not the big gatherings, like in past years.  It’s a very common practice to use disposable plates, cups and silverware -- because it's just easier!

But the Cuyahoga County Solid Waste District has a reminder that those items put a lot of extra garbage in our landfills.

Education specialist Carin Miller wants to remind people that just because something is plastic, doesn't mean it's recyclable.

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“Unfortunately, a lot of plastic has the number on the bottom, like the red party cups that everybody gets, it has a little triangle on the bottom and a number. But it's not recyclable, so those items need to go in the trash.”

Miller says reusable dishware is the way to go for a greener holiday.

“We recommend that everybody use reusable cups and forks and knives and plates. It's a more sustainable option and it should be a little easier this year because you have a smaller number of people coming to your house.”

Another important thing to note is that plastic wrap and aluminum foil are not recyclable.

That also includes aluminum pie plates and trays.

For more information on recycling, visit the Cuyahoga County Solid Waste District website.

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