August 24, 2008

Recycling Plastic

We know that we need to recycle plastic, but then we hear that some can leach toxic chemicals into our earth and water. Use the following list of numbers found inside the triangles on the plastic as a guideline:

#1, PET or PETE(polyethylene terephthalate): easily recycled. Used in water, soda and juice bottles.

#2, HDPE(high density polyethylene): easily recycled. Used in milk jugs, shampoo bottles, and liquid detergent bottles.

#3, PVC or Vinyl(polyvinyl chloride) : NOT recyclable. Soft PVC is known to leach toxic phthalates. Used in some cling wraps, detergent bottles, meat wraps, rain gear, cooking oil bottles, and spray bottles.

#4, LDPE(low density polyethylene) : recyclable at recycling centers. Used in plastic shopping bags, some baby bottles, and sandwich bags.

#5, PP(polypropylene) : sometimes recyclable. Used in most yogurt and deli takeout containers and reusable food containers.

#6, PS(polystyrene) : mostly not recyclable. They can leach styrene, a neurotoxin. Found in foam cups, takeout containers and egg containers.

#7, all other plastics, like PC(polycarbonate) : mostly, no.

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