Innovating with Recycling Beyond the Curb

Many of us are familiar with three carts for our waste – one for trash, recycling, and food + yard composting. We’ve had these carts for many years in Kirkland, and many people do a great job of separating food for composting, and cardboard boxes for recycling. This is great, but in Kirkland we’re always trying to think of what’s next in helping people reduce waste and recycle more. We’ve got to go beyond these carts at the curb if we want to keep improving our results.

The City of Kirkland works hard to offer creative programs and new recycling options for residents and businesses, like these:

Community Food Scrap Drop-off Locations

Some residents of apartments and condos do not have a compost bin at home, so the City opened two community food scrap drop-off locations, at Kirkland City Hall and North Kirkland Community Center. These sites are available for residents who don’t have access to compost at home to drop off their food scraps for composting.

StyroFest Styrofoam Recycling Events

Styrofoam is a difficult material – it’s not allowed in your home recycling and can easily fill up your garbage can because of its volume. StyroFest (pdf) offers Kirkland residents an opportunity to drop off their Styrofoam and plastic bags and film for recycling. These events are held once a month, and always draw a crowd. Kirklanders have recycled ~185 cubic yards of Styrofoam & plastic film at each of our 2019 StyroFest events so far (January – April) – in total that would fill 50 concrete mixer trucks!

Cooking Oil Recycling

Kirklanders can also recycle more by bringing used cooking oil to the North Kirkland Community Center collection container. The collected oil is processed into biodiesel. In 2018 Kirkland residents recycled 702 gallons of cooking oil at our drop-off!

City Hall Recycling Center

Kirkland residents can recycle a few more difficult-to-recycle items at City Hall, by bringing in CFL bulbs, smoke detectors, and household and rechargeable batteries for free recycling.

Extra Curbside Services with WM

Residents in single-family homes in Kirkland have access to extra curbside recycling services beside their regular carts. Residents can recycle textiles, electronics, and motor oil next to their carts by contacting Waste Management for instructions.