Sustainability is about ecology, economy and equity.- Ralph Bicknese

Surprisingly Recyclable Items

green craWhen we aren’t sure about an item’s ability to be recycled, it might be a good idea for us to investigate first before tossing it into the trash. Just check out the following four things that can actually be recycled despite what your instincts might tell you:

Running Shoes

If your shoes are totally busted and need to be replaced, you can send them to the Nike Reuse-A-Shoe program, which takes old sneakers and grinds them up into material that is then used to create the surfaces of sports venues like basketball courts, turf fields, and running tracks. If your old shoes could still be used by someone with smaller feet, or if you’ve just been bought a new pair by your Grandmother and she would be devastated if you didn’t show up to the family get-together wearing them, you can send your out-of-use shoes to One World Running, a program that provides running shoes to those in need around the world.


If you’re looking to dispose of your old batteries, throwing them away isn’t the only option. Single-use batteries contain recyclable substances that are actually considered hazardous and must be taken to a household hazardous waste facility to be properly recycled. A bit more work than tossing them out, but just one more way we can reduce the amount of waste we each contribute to the landfill.


I never would have thought that old jeans could have been converted into housing insulation for communities in need, but blue jeans go green is a program that does just that with the denim that you don’t wear anymore. You can look here to find the most convenient way for you to send out-of-use jeans on their way to becoming insulation.


Your drawing career hasn’t taken off as you once thought it would. Or maybe it has, but people enjoy your black-and-white stencils far more than your colorful work. What to do with all of those crayons, suddenly neglected and stuffed into a drawer? Try sending them to the national crayon recycling program, which takes old crayons and turns them into new, so that aspiring artists of all ages can take a crack at drawing that awesome rainbow image they have in their head.

Have you discovered any items to be surprisingly recyclable?

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