Iowans looking for alternative ways of discarding unwanted materials, rather than throwing them in the trash, can now visit a statewide online directory of places that recycle or safely dispose of those items.
Scott Flagg, with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, says “Iowa Greenlist” provides a list of locations that accept items to be recycled, reused or repurposed instead of ending up in a landfill. “They can search by material or by location, so if you live in Des Moines, you just enter ‘Des Moines’ and then it provides a search radius of anywhere from 15 to 500 miles,” Flagg says. The website, www.iagreenlist.com, also allows a search by organization or business.
Flagg says most Iowans might use it to find the closest location to safely dispose of household hazardous materials. “Paints, chemicals, pesticides and things like that,” Flagg says. “Then, we run into things people are used to getting rid of, but may not be aware of where they can go – such as clothes, textiles, car batteries. It really runs the gamut…basically, whatever it is you’re looking for, there might be a place nearby.”
Retailers are able to register on the website. Flagg says there are currently more than 500 registered locations on the site that accept products ranging from used oil filters to electronics. “Obviously, a thing that’s been popular lately is (recycling) cell phones and cell phone batteries,” Flagg says. “We have a few of those sites, I’ve seen, that have registered just in the past couple weeks.”
The website’s data base is growing, as Flagg says more retailers are joining nearly every day. Some of the businesses charge a fee for accepting items, while others pay for materials. “One thing we’re adding is contractors that provide deconstruction practices – folks that will take a building apart, separate the materials, and then find markets for those materials,” Flagg says.
Each organization or business registered on the website provides contact information, a list of materials accepted and the hours of operation.