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Bags on bags on bags 

Where to recycle those plastic bags

I try to be kind to our environment. I don't wash my car, sort my recycling like a good American and do my best to avoid using disposable grocery bags while shopping at the store.

“Do my best” is the key phrase here.

I’m only human, unfortunately, and a very forgetful human at that. While I have my reusable totes on hand quite often, there are times when I show up empty handed and end up leaving the store feeling guilty (about more than the impulse candy bar buy at checkout). 

Between the holidays and a full schedule, my plastic bag reserve has grown quite large over the past several months.

They are useful as trash bags and packing material, but I can only get so creative with ways to reuse plastic bags. My boyfriend’s mother loves when we bring her a fresh crop when we visit her at her home near Los Angeles (where, to her dismay, they've banned single-use plastic bags).

If you’re in the same boat, don’t throw them in your dumpster in the dead of night (these little guys cause a lot of trouble for sorting facilities and landfills when floating around loosey-goosey) and definitely don’t throw them in your curbside recycling bin. Plastic bags can’t be processed at sorting facilities and often damage equipment, so don’t recycle your recyclables in plastic bags either.

Instead, many stores in town have drop off receptacles where you can offload your single-use plastic bags. They can be recycled into bags and containers as well as composite lumber for decks or playgrounds.

Of course, this recycling single-use plastic bags isn't the ideal. We should all be doing our best to reduce our waste. After all, it is "reduce, reuse, recycle"— in that order.

A few drop off locations for plastic bags:

Albertsons - 61155 S Hwy 97 Bend, OR
Walmart Supercenter - 20120 Pinebrook Blvd BEND, OR
Fred Meyer - 61535 South Highway 97 Bend, OR
Whole Foods Market - 2610 NE Hwy 20 Bend, OR
Target - 63435 N Hwy 97 Bend, OR
Lowe’s - 20501 Cooley Rd Bend, OR

You can find more at recycling drop off locations at

About The Author

Keely Damara

Reporter | The Source Weekly
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